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Doctor insights on: Achalasia

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Dr. Hiroshi Mashimo
72 doctors shared insights

Achalasia (Overview)

Occurs when the muscle that makes up the esophagus spasms and contracts, which may cause chest pain, a feeling of "food being stuck in the throat", or regurgitation due to obstruction at the bottom of the esophagus.


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What is achalasia?

What is achalasia?

Achalasia: This is a progressive disorder of the esophagus in which the esophagus no longer has the ability to push food into the stomach and at the same time, the lower esophageal sphincter pressure is increased. The most common symptoms are difficulty swallowing and regurgitation. Symptoms may be confused with gerd. Diagnosis is made with endoscopy, x-rays, and esophageal manometry. ...Read more

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Dr. Hiroshi Mashimo
72 doctors shared insights

Achalasia (Overview)

Occurs when the muscle that makes up the esophagus spasms and contracts, which may cause chest pain, a feeling of "food being stuck in the throat", or regurgitation due to obstruction at the bottom of the esophagus.


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What are the symptoms of achalasia?

Achalasia symptoms: Difficulty swallowing regurgitation reflux weight loss vomiting endoscopy is performed to exclude a malignancy of the esophagus. X-rays often demonstrate a narrowing or birds beak of the distal esophagus. Manometry is diagnostic. Laparoscopic surgery with a heller myotomy is highly effective treatment. ...Read more

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I have been diagnosed with "achalasia" and may require an operation. Why what how?

I have been diagnosed with "achalasia" and may require an operation. Why what how?

See below: Usually a long flexible tube is passed down the throat and in to the esophagus with a video camera so the GI doctor can visualize the problem on a tv screen. It is not really an operation but a procedure. You will receive medicine so you fall asleep during the procedure. The doctor can sometimes inject Botox to help alleviate the problem. ...Read more

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Can a manometry test be false positive for achalasia? Gr son had test dr said achalasia but no "bird beak" low/no peristalsis. Could it be ee or eos?

Can a manometry test be false positive for achalasia? Gr son had test dr said achalasia but no "bird beak" low/no peristalsis. Could it be ee or eos?

Unlikely but: Hi, the manometry is the diagnostic test for achalasia. Imaging tests are usually adjuvant for the diagnosis but are not diagnostic. There are a few subtypes of achalasia that can be only diagnosed by manometry. Can this be eosinophilic esophagitis- yes it can be and this can be easily ruled out by esophageal biopsies , which must already have been done. Hope this helps. ...Read more

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Can sleep apnea cause achalasia?

Can sleep apnea cause achalasia?

R/O OSA: WHATEVER POSITION IS MORE COMFORTABLE. OSA can be suggested with underling obesity/small oral airway/collar size>18. The definitive test is a PSG with split night/CPAP titration. I would request copy of sleep study and get a second opinion if you are not satisfied with the options. CPAP can be difficult to tolerate. ENT FOR UPP EVAL.VS HYOID SUSPENSION . NO CORELATION WITH ACHALASIAIA ...Read more

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Hi, can GERD cause esophageal dysmotility? I don´t mean achalasia or sclerodermia. Only GERD (les 3mmhg). I have both and non specific. Thanks

Hi, can GERD cause esophageal dysmotility? I don´t mean achalasia or sclerodermia. Only GERD (les 3mmhg). I have both and non specific. Thanks

They go together: Your les (lower esophageal sphincter) is hypotensive. The pressure is too low. Normally it should be above 10mmhg. Therefore acid from the stomach can freely go up to your esophagus and therefore gerd. If your physician told you that rest of manometry was unremarkable, you may still have scleroderma. Some foods and medications can decrease the les pressure. Achalasia has a high les pressure. ...Read more

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Anyone here treat dysphagia or achalasia?

Anyone here treat dysphagia or achalasia?

Achalasia: This is a disease where the nerves of the esophagus no longer function to coordinate the muscles to push down food, or send a signal to the lower valve of the esophagus at the entrance to the stomach to open an let the food in. Cause usually unknown. Most effective and most invasive treatment is surgically cutting the muscle of the valve, that can be done laparoscopically or endoscopically (poem). ...Read more

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I have pain in my chest and my doc says it is achalasia. How is this treated?

I have pain in my chest and my doc says it is achalasia. How is this treated?

Open valve : There is no cure for achalasia, so treatment is aimed at opening the valve between the esophagus and stomach to let food to pass through. Botox is usually not a good option. Balloon dilation is ok, but usually requires multiple times. Surgery (myotomy) is very effective, but more invasive. The newest advance is endoscopic surgery (poem procedure). Ask your dr for centers doing this. Good luck! ...Read more

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What is the treatment for esophageal achalasia?

What is the treatment for esophageal achalasia?

Several: The main treatments are 1) medications, 2) endoscopic, and 3) surgical. Which one to choose depends on how severe the symptoms are. ...Read more

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What are the benefits of the treatments for achalasia?

Swallowing normally: The goal of treatment for achalasia is to improve swallowing and avoid complications such as weight loss and malnutrition. The newest, and likely most effective treatment is per oral endoscopic myotomy (poem). This is offered in springfield, ma, chicago, portland, or, san diego, and long island to name most of the centers performing this procedure. ...Read more

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Has anyone cured an illness called achalasia?

No: Achalasia is a problem with the nerves in the esophagus not working to coordinate the muscle. There is no known cure, but the symptoms can be relieved by treating the valve at the lower portion of the esophagus, such as Botox (not good, makes other treatments more difficult), balloon dilation ( usually at least two times), laparoscopic muscle splitting (surgery) and endoscopic surgery (poem). ...Read more

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What kind of pills or treatment can somebody get for esophageal achalasia?

What kind of pills or treatment can somebody get for esophageal achalasia?

No pills: The only effective treatment is to open the lower esophageal valve by balloon dilation or surgically through the abdomen or the mouth (poem). Pills don't work, nor does botox. ...Read more

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What is achalasia ?

Motor disorder: Achalasia is a motor disorder of the esophagus. Achalasia is characterized by two things: 1) failure of relaxation of the sphincter between the esophagus and stomach when swallowing, 2) no normal mobement of the esophagus. Best treatment is minimal invasive surgery (or robotic) cutting muscle and a partial "wrap" procedure called heller myotomy with fundoplication. ...Read more

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What is achalasia?

Achalasia: This is a progressive disorder of the esophagus in which the esophagus no longer has the ability to push food into the stomach and at the same time, the lower esophageal sphincter pressure is increased. The most common symptoms are difficulty swallowing and regurgitation. Symptoms may be confused with gerd. Diagnosis is made with endoscopy, x-rays, and esophageal manometry. ...Read more

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What is achalasia?

Achalasia: It is a motility disorder of the esophagus when the distal esophagus at the junction with the stomach can not relax, therefore difficult to pass solids and liquids into the stomach. See full info educational info at http://en.Wikipedia.Org/wiki/achalasia and/or http://www.Mayoclinic.Org/achalasia/. ...Read more

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What is achalasia ?

Motor disorder: Achalasia is a motor disorder of the esophagus. Achalasia is characterized by two things: 1) failure of relaxation of the sphincter between the esophagus and stomach when swallowing, 2) no normal mobement of the esophagus. Best treatment is minimal invasive surgery (or robotic) cutting muscle and a partial "wrap" procedure called heller myotomy with fundoplication. ...Read more

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What is the achalasia?

Esophageal prob: Problem with the swallowing tube not working normally. ...Read more

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Has anyone heard of achalasia?

Achalasia: This is a narrowing of the esophagus which can be very painful. Sometimes it can be treated by dilating the esophagus to reduce the pain and narrowing. You should see a gastroenterologist for further treatment. ...Read more

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Dr. Payam Mehranpour
73 doctors shared insights

Esophageal Achalasia (Definition)

Achalasia is an esophageal motility disorder. It is diagnosed by manometry, showing a lack of relaxation of the distal esophagus and decreased peristalsis. Primary achalasia (most common) is due to loss of inhibitory neurons in the distal esophagus. Secondary achalasia is caused by chagas disease. "pseudo-achalasia" is seen with cancers. Surgical treatment ...Read more


Dr. John Landi
57 doctors shared insights

Cardiospasm (Definition)

Cardiospasm = regurgitation or difficulty swallowing due to lack of relaxation of muscle fibers in ...Read more