GERD is Common Among First Responders and Survivors
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) occurs when stomach acid frequently flows back into the tube connecting your mouth and stomach (esophagus). This backwash (acid reflux) can irritate the lining of your esophagus. Many people experience acid reflux from time-to-time. GERD is mild acid reflux that occurs at least twice a week, or moderate-to-severe acid reflux that occurs at least once a week.
Compensation for Survivors with GERD
Diagnoses of gastroesophageal reflux diseases are becoming more prevalent among 9/11 first responders and survivors. Our WTC compensation lawyers at Hansen & Rosasco, LLP have represented clients with GERD before the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCF). Victim compensation payouts have been life changing for many of our clients, whose illnesses have affected their ability to work and live normal lives.
GERD Treatment Options
Most people can manage the discomfort of GERD with lifestyle changes and over-the-counter medicines. But some people with GERD may need stronger medications or even surgery to ease their symptoms. In some cases, first responders – who had higher exposure to toxic chemicals at Ground Zero – could experience a GERD disability, leaving them unable to work.
The GERD symptoms and signs of gastroesophageal diseases include:
- A burning sensation in the chest (heartburn), usually after eating, which might be worse at night
- Chest pain
- Difficulty swallowing
- Regurgitation of food or sour liquid
- Sensation of a lump in your throat
Research in 9/11 GERD
Research studies accepted by the federal government show that GERD can be caused by exposure to dust, fumes, and other toxic contaminants found in Lower Manhattan in the months after 9/11.