Esophageal Stricture



  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Discomfort with swallowing
  • A feeling that food gets stuck in the esophagus
  • Regurgitation of food
  • Weight loss

Common Causes:

Gastroesophageal reflux (GERD)


  • Medical history review and review of symptoms of esophageal stricture
  • Physical examination
  • A barium swallow. Patient will swallow barium and x-rays can be taken to show the narrowing of the esophagus
  • An endoscopy exam. This narrow tube is inserted into the esophagus and it can show any narrowing of the esophagus

Common Treatments:

  • Dilation. The esophagus is stretched by the use of one of several methods. Two of the methods of dilation are performed by passing a dilator or air-filled balloon through a endoscope. Repeated dilation may be necessary to prevent the stricture from returning.
  • Proton pump inhibitors, such as omeprazole, lansoprazole or rabeprazole, can keep strictures from returning.
  • Surgical treatment is rarely necessary. It is performed if a stricture can’t be dilated enough to allow solid food to pass through. Surgery is also performed if repeated dilations do not keep these strictures from returning.