Using the GERD Defense in Your Orange County DUI Case
If you have been charged with an Orange County DUI, the GERD defense may be available to you if you took a breath test and have been diagnosed with GERD. GERD is a chronic digestive disease that occurs when stomach acid or, occasionally, bile flows back (refluxes) into your food pipe (esophagus). GERD can cause falsely high breath test results when alcohol from the stomach enters the mouth and then is exhaled.
Tell your Orange County DUI attorney about any digestive problems
You should still advise your Orange County DUI attorney if you suffer from indigestion or heartburn, even if you have not been diagnosed with GERD. It is also important to let your Orange County DUI lawyer know if you use over-the-counter medications like Prilosec, Tagamet, Rolaids, Tums, Maalox, or any other antacids. These may be indicators that you do, indeed, suffer from GERD.
It is rare for individuals to have serious episodes of regurgitation and not feel it. However, it is possible for a person to have continuous mild regurgitation and never know that this is occurring. This may cause individuals to deny that they have a medical condition when asked by a police officer, simply because they do not know they have a medical condition or do not feel that their symptoms constitute a medical condition.
To successfully raise the GERD defense
In order to successfully raise the GERD defense in court you will need medical proof that you have the condition. To obtain the requisite evidence, your Orange County DUI lawyer may ask you to undergo two medical tests: (a) an endoscopy; and (b) a 24-hour pH test.
Your Orange County DUI lawyer will then need to determine, based on your drinking pattern, if you could still have had alcohol in your stomach at the time of the breath-alcohol testing. If not, then you cannot utilize the GERD defense in your DUI case even though you legitimately suffer from GERD.
Get Help With Your Orange County DUI Case
Orange County DUI lawyers at Coffey and Coffey have experience with defending DUI cases in which GERD is involved and can help you gather the evidence you need to build an effective defense to your DUI case. For a free consultation, please contact our dedicated Orange County DUI attorneys at (800) 706-7888 today.