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Baseball Star Pitches for GERD

Jim Palmer touring country in public education campaign

MONDAY, July 1, 2002 (HealthDayNews) -- Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Palmer is winding up to deliver his own personal message as part of a campaign to educate people about gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and other gastrointestinal disorders.

The program is called Pitching In for Community Health and includes the Coalition for Healthier Cities and Communities, AstraZeneca and many hospitals throughout the country.

As part of the campaign, Palmer is touring minor league baseball stadiums across the United States this summer. Palmer, whose baseball career included six World Series and five All-Star games, suffered for 10 years with such GERD symptoms as persistent heartburn.

He thought it was normal because he didn't keep a regular meal schedule while traveling from game to game. However, he became worried when it started affecting his pitching and broadcasting careers, according to a prepared statement. His message is that people suffering from GERD should see their doctor.

GERD is a common chronic condition that affects about 21 million Americans. Symptoms include heartburn, regurgitation of gastric acid, difficult and/or painful swallowing and chest pain.

More information

Visit the "Pitching In" Web site at or call 1-877-Reflux2.

The American College of Gastroenterology has lots more on understanding this disease.

SOURCE: AstraZeneca news release
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