Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a digestive disorder that affects the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). This is the ring of muscle between the esophagus and the stomach.
Some doctors believe a hiatal hernia can weaken the LES and increase the risk for GERD. This condition occurs when the upper part of the stomach moves into the chest through a small opening in the diaphragm.
Generally, the treatment options for GERD include lifestyle changes, like losing weight, quitting smoking and changing your diet. Additional treatment options include over-the-counter medication and endoscopy in severe cases.