The Fastest Growing Cancer in America

Heartburn may be doing far more damage to your body than you believe. Take a useless drug to treat it, and you may have trouble digesting your food properly or suffer from diarrhea. Even worse, frequent problems with heartburn may increase your odds of esophageal cancer, America’s fastest growing cancer.

The deadly facts you can’t ignore:

  • Over the past two decades, the incidence of esophageal cancer has risen six-fold.
  • Because the growth of esophageal cancer is slow, most patients aren’t diagnosed until they lose their appetite or have problems swallowing.
  • Only 16 percent of patients diagnosed with esophageal cancer will survive five years.

In rare cases, severe gastroesophageal reflux disease, better known as GERD, forces changes in the lining of the esophagus with more protective but cancer-prone cells. Patients with that condition — Barrett’s esophagus — are a minimum 30 times more vulnerable to esophageal cancer.

Various treatments of the conventional kind include snaking a balloon down a patient’s throat to burn away cancerous tissue, but that’s no guarantee the cancer won’t come back

Your best and safest options for treating heartburn and lowering your risk of esophageal cancer are the easiest:

MSNBC March 20, 2006