Action Against Heartburn is a group of charities that promote earlier diagnosis of oesophageal cancer, in partnership with Barrett's Oesophagus Campaign for fundraising purposes.
The UK has the highest rate in the world for adenocarcinoma which is heavily associated with persistent heartburn and a condition called Barrett's Oesophagus.
The oesophagus is the food pipe between your throat and stomach. It cannot cope well with stomach acid. Prolonged exposure to stomach acid can make its lining change. This can lead to Barrett's Oesophagus. A person with newly-developed Barrett's Oesophagus aged 30 years may have an 11 - 25% risk of developing adenocarcinoma before the age of 80. Around 67% of people diagnosed at an early stage survive for 5 years or more, but overall the survival rate is 15% (the 5-year survival rate for breast cancer is 87%).
Detecting this cancer can make a dramatic difference to the chances of successful treatment. Investigating persistent heartburn provides a chance of diagnosing, monitoring and treating Barrett's Oesophagus before it's too late. So don't keep taking over-the-counter medication for heartburn like Gaviscon, Rennies or Tums month after month - see your GP and get the underlying causes investigated.
The money we raise will help spread the word and will have lives.