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Esophageal web

Esophageal web
Classification & external resources
ICD-10 Q39.4
DiseasesDB 31503
eMedicine med/3413 

Esophageal webs are thin membranes located in the middle or upper esophagus. They are mainly observed in the Plummer-Vinson syndrome, which is associated with iron deficiency anemia. Its main symptoms are pain and difficulty in swallowing (odynophagia).

Esophageal webs are associated with bullous diseases (such as epidermolysis bullosa, pemphigus, and bullous pemphigoid), with graft versus host disease involving the esophagus, and with celiac disease.

Esophageal webs are thin (2-3mm) membranes of normal esophageal tissue consisting of mucosa and submucosa. They can be congenital or acquired. Congenital webs commonly appear in the middle and inferior third of the esophagus, and they are more likely to be circumferential with a central or eccentric orifice. Acquired webs are much more common than congenital webs and typically appear in the cervical area (postcricoid).

Esophageal webs are more common in white individuals and in women (with a ratio 2:1). The literature describes relations between these webs and Plummer-Vinson Syndrome, bullous dermatologic disorders, inlet patch, graft-versus-host disease and celiac disease. The postulated mechanisms are sideropenic anemia (mechanism unknown) or some interference of the immune system. Esophageal webs can be ruptured during upper endoscopy.

Clinical symptoms of this condition are selective (solid more than liquids) dysphagia, thoracic pain, nasopharyngeal reflux, aspiration, perforation and food impaction (the last two are very rare).

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Esophageal_web". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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