Background: Patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease may suffer from a variety of symptoms from the upper aerodigestive tract. The objective of this study was to determine the impact of dual-probe 24-hr pH monitoring in the diagnosis of reflux-related otolaryngological disorders.
Methods: Twenty-two patients with symptoms such as chronic cough, globus pharyngeus, heartburn,dysphonia and burning sensation of the tongue underwent a complete ear, nose and throat examination, 24-hr dual-probe pH monitoring, and oesophago-gastro-duodenoscopy.
Results: pH monitoring revealed gastroesophageal (distal) reflux in all patients and pharyngeal (proximal) reflux in 21 patients. Treatment consisted of a proton pump inhibitor (esomeprazole). Within 4 weeks 68 per cent of patients had no laryngopharyngeal symptoms; within 8 weeks 95 per cent of patients were symptom-free.
Conclusions: Patients with atypical reflux symptoms such as hoarseness, globus sensation or throat-clearing responded well to anti-reflux treatment.