Laryngopharyngeal Reflux (LPR)


This is a throat irritation that happens when stomach acid travels up into your throat. Normally, this acid is kept in your stomach by a muscle called the "lower esophageal sphincter." But, if this muscle doesn't work properly, it lets acid escape and go up your esophagus to your throat. We call this "reflux."


Why do some people get LPR? For some, it's linked to aging. It's more common in older people, and in those who are overweight or overstressed. It may be linked to your diet. And, you may be more likely to have this problem if you often wear tight clothing that puts pressure on your abdomen.


LPR makes your throat feel sore. You may have hoarseness and coughing. It may feel like you have a lump or mucus in your throat, and you may feel you need to clear it. And, it may be hard for you to swallow.


Most people manage LPR with over-the-counter medications to control stomach acid, and with lifestyle changes. Eating bland food and smaller, more frequent meals can help. If you're overweight, lose the extra pounds. Avoid alcohol, caffeine and tobacco products. Don't eat before you go to bed, and sleep with your head raised. If these aren't helpful, your healthcare provider will create a care plan that's right for you.