Is it Reflux? Or Eosinophilic Esophagitis?

Until recently, a disease known as eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) was passed off as every-day reflux. But the condition is far more. It causes a host of symptoms including:

Reflux Or Eosinophilic Esophagitis

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  • Gut pain
  • Pain in the center of the chest
  • Heartburn
  • Vomiting
  • Difficulty swallowing food
  • Food impaction (food getting lodged in the esophagus)
  • Weight loss
  • Failure to thrive (in children)

EoE now affects 1 out of every 2,000 people in the U.S. It is believed that EoE is triggered by food allergies, though pollen allergies can contribute, too. As the body reacts to the allergy, white blood cells congregate in the throat area, causing it to become raw and inflamed. This can make the eating process painful, which is why many EoE sufferers (especially children) will eat less and lose weight. Over time, scar tissue can develop, causing the esophagus to narrow and food to become impacted.

If children with EoE routinely refuse food, they may miss important milestones in learning to chew and swallow food that can only be fixed later with intensive feeding therapies.

Eosinophilic Esophagitis Treatment

Acid blockers and steroids can help reduce the symptoms of EoE. The problem, however, is that they don’t address the root of the condition. That means that when the medications wear off, you are left with the same old discomfort. Plus, the medications can cause side effects. Steroids, for example, may lead to weight gain, insomnia, moodiness, osteoporosis, elevated blood sugar, and more. Acid blockers may cause nausea and diarrhea.

The lasting solution to EoE is to treat the allergy itself for long-term relief. The only treatment that has been shown to affect the underlying allergy is immunotherapy, which exposes the immune system to small doses of allergens to desensitize the body to them. Allergy immunotherapy is available through allergy shots or under-the-tongue (sublingual) drops. Shots aren’t effective for reducing food allergies, but allergy drops are. Thus, physicians are now prescribing sublingual drops as an eosinophilic esophagitis treatment.

As food allergies increase, it is expected that eosinophilic esophagitis will, too. Contact AllergyEasy to find out how our sublingual allergy drops can provide a safe, natural, effective treatment for EoE.

About The Author

Stuart H. Agren, M.D.

Stuart H. Agren, M.D. completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Utah and went on to earn his Doctor of Medicine from Tulane University School of Medicine in 1974. He completed additional training at L.D.S. Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah and then established his private medical practice starting in 1975. Dr. Agren completed a mini-residency in Industrial Medicine at the Robert Johnson School of Medicine at Rutgers University and also completed training to become a certified Medical Review Officer.

Dr. Agren was the Medical Director at TRW and McDonnell Douglas in Mesa, Arizona and at Stauffer Chemical and Kennecott Copper in Salt Lake City, Utah. He also served as an adjunct faculty member at Arizona State University.

In his private medical practice, Dr. Agren specialized in family practice and allergy. In his work as a private practice allergist, he was one of the first doctors in the country to prescribe sublingual immunotherapy to his patients as an alternative to subcutaneous immunotherapy (allergy shots). He has also been a trailblazer in the field of food allergy treatment and research, developing a program to treat multiple food allergies simultaneously using sublingual immunotherapy. Dr. Agren has been featured on local CBS, NBC, and ABC news affiliates and won the peer-nominated “Top Doc” award from Phoenix Magazine.

After 20 years in private practice, Dr. Agren became the Founder and President of AllergyEasy, which helps primary care physicians around the country offer allergy testing and sublingual immunotherapy treatment to their patients. Over 200 physicians in over 32 states use the AllergyEasy program to help their patients overcome environmental and food allergies and asthma.