How to treat Barrett’s esophagus
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) has a number of complications. The most serious consequence is Barrett’s esophagus. This ailment appears in some patients with GERD due to significant damage to the esophageal mucosa by bile and / or acid. The cells of the esophageal mucosa begin to be replaced by cells of the gastric or intestinal type, then we can talk about the occurrence of a precancerous disease, the so-called Barrett’s syndrome. When cells with dysplasia are found against the background of intestinal metaplasia, one can speak of a precancerous condition.
Barrett ‘s syndrome :
- Acid and bile constantly enter the esophagus.
- Cells adapt to negative conditions and begin to differentiate, i.e. during reproduction, become not flat cells of the esophageal mucosa, but cells of a cylindrical nature (gastric type, or intestinal).
- There are inflammatory changes that end in dysplasia.
Symptoms of Barrett’s Esophagus
To start treating Barrett’s esophagus, you must first diagnose it. But there are no characteristic symptoms of this disease. In patients with GERD, this disease should be ruled out.
But still there are signs indicating this disease:
- Constant heartburn that causes unbearable discomfort. Stopping heartburn with home remedies is almost impossible. Also, single doses of drugs that reduce acidity do not cope well with this symptom. But in some cases, there may be no heartburn if the reflux is carried out with bile or bile with acid.
- Sometimes people with Barrett’s esophagus may experience only discomfort under the “spoon”. Pain may occur during physical exertion. Or when bending over, when liquid food is poured into the esophagus.
- A hoarse voice in the morning, coughing and a wet spot on the pillows are also symptoms of this disease. Since in such people acid reflux mainly happens at night.
Diagnosis of Barrett’s esophagus
The most informative method for diagnosing this disease at the moment is endoscopic examination. After confirming the diagnosis, you can proceed to the treatment of Barrett’s esophagus.
How to treat Barrett’s esophagus. Is it possible to get rid of this disease forever?
To date, it is not possible to completely cure Barrett’s esophagus (replace cylindrical cell metaplasia with normal cells of the esophagus) either by medication or by surgical treatment. Although this issue has been the subject of many studies. Among the most successful methods of treatment, the appearance of a new epithelium in some places, but not its complete restoration, was noted.
The most modern treatment of Barrett’s esophagus offers the destruction of disease foci by various methods. But in this procedure, the human factor is often important. After all, it is impossible to accurately determine all the lesions. Many cases have been described where tiny lesions remained, which subsequently overgrown with new cells of the esophageal mucosa. And the remnants of Barrett’s esophagus continued to develop, but they were no longer visible during endoscopy.
There is another method, to change your worldview, lifestyle. You need to be prepared for lifelong drug therapy and dieting. Get rid of bad habits.