Heartburn Program

Northern Light Heartburn Program

The Northern Light Heartburn Program is a comprehensive, patient-centered program focused on providing a solution of testing and therapies for any and all patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), heartburn, hiatal hernia, and esophageal symptoms.

With the latest training and equipment, including advanced robotic technology, our specialists are able to diagnose many conditions causing heartburn. Our program provides easy and convenient access to comprehensive treatment of GERD as a service to both patients and referring physicians.  

Patient education and participation in treatment decisions is paramount and the process is streamlined by eliminating long waits between appointments. Patients have a designated expert patient coordinator readily available, and all physicians involved in the treatment work together as a comprehensive care team to provide unified care.

Patients should be referred by their primary care physician or seek more information by contacting the Northern Light Heartburn Program’s specially trained Nurse Coordinator:

Zina Black, RN, BSN, CNOR, Hernia & Heartburn Program Coordinator
zblack@northernlight.org or 207.973.5077


Why choose Northern Light Health?

If you have heartburn, regurgitation, swallowing difficulties or even symptoms in your throat such as cough and hoarseness, GERD can make your life miserable. It affects eating habits, work productivity, sleep, and just your overall quality of life.

You are not alone. GERD affects millions of people – up to 40 percent of the population of the US. Some try to modify their lifestyle, while others take antacids or other over-the-counter medications. Many are prescribed powerful medications designed to be taken for life. Yet, many still suffer and crave relief. If this is you, we understand and are here to help.

Our expert staff understands your suffering and has the capabilities to thoroughly evaluate your condition and deliver an array of treatment choices that may finally provide the relief you deserve.


Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) can cause a wide array of symptoms and each person’s experience can be very different. Initial evaluation begins with the team reviewing personal and family health history while exploring the ways acid reflux is impacting a patient’s quality of life. Every effort is made to provide complete information on the anatomy of the esophagus and stomach, comparing normal function with the manifestations of lower esophageal sphincter (LES) failure and the correlation of resulting symptoms that the patient is experiencing.

Clear discussions explaining diagnostic testing assure that patients are comfortable and well informed for each procedure and how the results will be used in planning disease management.

Our team is dedicated to providing patients all the resources needed to make an informed, shared decision and support them throughout the process.

Our Surgical Robot Technology

In 2020, Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center expanded our robotic offerings by upgrading our fleet of surgical robots to include the most recent technology, the DaVinci Xi. In addition, we are the only hospital in Maine leading the way with four surgical robots, offering easy access, close to home, for our patients. This makes Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center home to the largest surgical robot program in the State of Maine. Watch our video below to learn more.