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Internist
Internist, Board Certified Physician
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 4766
Experience:  Int. Med., Gastroenterology. Fellow American College of Physicians. Trained, located in the U.S.
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I have just been told that my esophagus narrows to 50%. I

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I have just been told that my esophagus narrows to 50%. I have trouble swallowing. I am scheduled for an upper endoscopy. What does all this mean?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Internist replied 5 years ago.
Hello,

You have an esophageal stricture or narrowing of the esophagus. This can be secondary to a benign or malignant cause. Benign causes of stricture of the esophagus results from acid reflux over a long period of time which courses inflammation and scarring and narrowing. Whenever there is difficulty swallowing and a stricture, malignancy must be excluded. For this reason you are doing the correct thing by having an upper endoscopy at which time they will be able to do biopsies of the esophagus. If it he is a benign stricture they will be able to dilate it with certain instruments. If it it is a malignant stricture they will do further testing to determine what type of treatment you will need.


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Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Are acid reflux or cancer the only causes?

Expert:  Internist replied 5 years ago.
These 2 are the most common. There are other causes of stricture such as the ingestion of lye or certain medications or radiation. There is an allergic type of inflammation called eosinophilic esophagitis however although that may cause difficulty swallowing it usually will not cause such a severe stricture and usually presents earlier in life.


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Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I am burping all the time. Is that an indicator of acid reflux?
Expert:  Internist replied 5 years ago.
Acid reflux usually causes heartburn but may cause belching. It is possible.


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