Symptoms and Treatment of Barrett’s Esophagus for patients in New Jersey
Barrett’s Esophagus Overview
Barrett’s esophagus, also known as Barrett’s disease and Barrett’s esophagitis, is a condition where the tissue lining the esophagus is changed, leading to potential problems. It is most commonly seen in people with long-term gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a form of chronic heartburn. The constant acid reflux damages the cells of the esophagus, causing Barrett’s esophagus.
Having Barrett’s esophagus increases your risk of esophageal cancer, so expert diagnosis, treatment, and surveillance are crucial. Barrett’s Esophagus doctors at Advanced Gastro Center can perform regular checks of your esophagus for precancerous cells if you have Barrett’s.
Barrett’s Esophagus Symptoms
Apparent symptoms usually do not manifest from Barrett’s esophagus. Rather, the symptoms experienced are from heartburn or GERD. These include a painful burning sensation in the throat and chest, acidic reflux into the mouth, and worsening of symptoms after eating or when lying down.
Barrett’s Esophagus Risk Factors
The biggest risk factor for Barrett’s esophagus is longstanding GERD of longer than five years. Additionally, Barrett’s disproportionately affects men, overweight people, and smokers.
Barrett’s Esophagus Treatment
Diagnosis of Barrett’s esophagus is usually made through an endoscopy, where a tube is passed into the throat to look for anything suspicious. Biopsies are generally done during this procedure to check for abnormal cells.
Once Barrett’s is confirmed, New Jersey gastroenterology doctors will make a treatment plan. Mild cases are usually handled with routine surveillance and efforts to control your GERD, such as medications and diet changes. More severe cases will need to be addressed by removing the diseased tissue in the esophagus by freezing, heat ablation, or surgery.