Esophagitis occurs when the lining of the esophagus becomes inflamed. The inflammation can be caused by an infection (bacteria, virus or fungi) or irritation resulting from vomiting, GERD symptoms (stomach acid flowing backward into the esophagus), or other factors such as certain medications or swallowing a large pill with little water.

Symptoms of the condition include heartburn, mouth sores, difficulty swallowing, nausea/vomiting or a feeling of something being stuck in the throat. Treatment methods differ depending on factors contributing to the ailment. They can include antibiotics or antifungal medications to treat bacteria or fungal infections, medications to block acid production or steroid treatment to reduce inflammation. Esophagitis shouldn’t be left untreated because it can cause ulcers, scarring and trouble swallowing.