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What is Achalasia?

Tuesday, March 10, 2009 @ 07:03 PM
posted by: admin

Achalasia, also known as esophageal achalasia, achalasia cardiae, cardiospasm, and esophageal aperistalsis, is an esophageal motility disorder: The smooth muscle layer of the esophagus loses normal peristalsis (muscular ability to move food down the esophagus), and the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) fails to relax properly in response to swallowing. It is characterized by incomplete LES relaxation, increased LES tone, and aperistalsis of the esophagus.

Achalasia is characterized by difficulty swallowing, regurgitation, and sometimes chest pain. Diagnosis is reached with esophageal manometry and barium swallow X-ray studies. Various treatments are available, although none cure the condition completely. Certain medications or Botox may be used in some cases, but more permanent relief is brought by esophageal dilatation and surgical cleaving of the muscle (Heller myotomy).

One Response to “What is Achalasia?”

  1. MsCarter says:

    Thank you for helping me to better understand what Achalasia is and does to our bodies.

    I know that there’s a new cookbook being published right now called, “Achalasia Diet Delights”. I will be sure to drop by again and share some of the book’s most delicious recipes and interesting facts.

    Please, keep informing us as new research emerges! God Bless

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