Shot of a young businessman experiencing throat pain while working in an office

Silent Reflux

Also called Laryngopharyngeal Reflux or LPR

LPR is responsible for the following symptoms in the throat, often without the person being aware of underlying reflux

Hoarseness/Voice change

Post-nasal drip


Excessive throat clearing

Excess throat mucous

A globus sensation (lump in the throat)


Mostly these patients don’t have heartburn, hence the term “silent reflux”. There may not be enough acidic reflux to cause heartburn, but there is enough to affect the delicate lining of the throat, which has no protection against acid.

Laryngopharyngeal reflux is diagnosed on history and a laryngeal scope is done, both to prove the diagnosis and to exclude other more serious problems, such as throat cancer.

Treatment is to modify the diet, to try to lose weight and sometimes to use acid suppressing medications to give the throat a break from any acidic reflux.

Sometimes a short period (3 weeks) of treatment with an acid suppressing medication is used both to diagnose the problem and to treat it. Longer term preventative medication is used for ongoing symptoms.