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Detection of Barrett’s Esophagus

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Detection of Barrett’s Esophagus

The main function of the esophagus is to transport food and water from the mouth to the stomach, and while the two organs are in close proximity, the cells that form the lining of the esophagus are not capable of resisting the acid from the stomach. There are changes in the surface of the esophagus that occur as a result of acid reflux, or the consistent return of the stomach’s contents toward the esophagus. These changes are known as Barrett’s Esophagus. If the acid reflux persists, the changes in the cells’ structures become more pronounced, and give way to low-grade dysplasia, and later to high-grade dysplasia which is, in general terms, already considered an early cancer. The early detection of these changes or lesions is essential for taking steps to stop the evolution of the cellular changes and reduce the incidence of esophageal cancer.

Currently, the diagnosis of Barrett’s Esophagus is done with the use of white light endoscopes and is confirmed by biopsies of the esophageal surface that are analyzed by an experienced pathologist. However, low-grade and high-grade dysplasias are only identified with high definition endoscopes with electronic chromoendoscopy and magnification functionalities. These scopes highlight the areas in the esophagus with surface cell changes, achieving the early detection of premalignant lesions. Our training and experience with these endoscopes have allowed us to achieve a 100% diagnosis agreement with the pathology reports.

In the Surgery and Gastroenterological Endoscopy Center we have at our disposal the proper equipment for the early diagnosis of these lesions. Additionally, we are qualified to remove these early esophageal lesions by means of endoscopic surgery techniques known as ESD.

Barrett´s esophagus seen with White Light and High Definition Endoscopy (WLHDE).

Barrett esophagus with WLHDE and Electronic Cromoendoscopy.

Barrett esophagus with WLHDE and Electronic Cromoendoscopy.

The finding in this patient was Low Grade Diyplasia, a pre malignant condition.