One more thing smoking contributes to:
Smoking contributes to acid refulx/gerd by loosening the valve between your stomach and esophagus which can let the acid back up into your esophagus and burn the cells until sometimes, they can mutate into a whole different type of cell that does not belong there and can become cancer.
A short explanation of G.E.R.D and Barrett's
The procedure is shown below.
I was diagnosed with Barrett's with high grade dysplasia in May of 2012. I started bleeding in my esophagus and after a 3 day weekend, had lost 25% of my blood. Had to have a transfusion and tests resulting in it's discovery.
I have been under watch since that time and treatment started about a year and a half ago.
They knock you out, stick the catheter down your throat and burn a layer off the damaged inside and scrape off what they burned. In time they hopefully get it all and the mutated cells are replaced with normal ones.
If you have regular heartburn
Best thing you can do is not eat within 3 hours of lying down, and pitch your bed so the head is higher than the foot end. I have to take a quadruple dose of acid supressants daily and have these treatments every 4 months.
Wish me well. I'll try to be back here in 10 hours or have Nancy give you an update.
PS I didn't realize I had such severe acid reflux so it went untreated for years. If you regularly have heartburn, have your primary dr. refer you to a specialist. Esophageal cancer can take your life in less than a year.