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Does my child have reflux?

Understanding Reflux


Gastro-oesophageal Reflux (GOR) and Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease (GORD) are different. By definition, GOR is normal, whereas GORD is a disease.

Gasto-oesophageal reflux (GOR) occurs normally in all infants, children and adults during and immediately after meals. GOR refers to the contents of the stomach washing back up from the stomach into the oesophagus. It can wash up to the throat, and even be ejected out of the mouth; in otherwise healthy infants, this can be normal occurrence for a period of time – see
Paediatric Leaflet

Gasto-oesophageal Reflux (GORD) is present when there are symptoms or signs that are troublesome, or severe, or chronic, or when complications are present.

These symptoms might include:

  • Recurrent forceful vomiting
  • Vomiting of blood
  • Chronic cough
  • Chronic irritability

Such symptoms might indicate that reflux is severe enough to be causing a complication, such as inflammation of the oesophagus, known as ‘oesophagitis’. We have a list of what you should look out for here.

If GORD is suspected, tests and/or treatment are likely required.


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