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Esophageal Ulcers

This is a video taken in a patient with chronic heartburn due to acid "backsplashing," or refluxing up into his esophagus. During this gastroscopy examination you can see the open valve between the stomach and lower esophagus. Note how the acid damage has caused shallow ulcerations in the lower esophagus which appear darker than the surrounding normal tissue. This condition is often called Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease, or GERD.

Normally the opening between the esophagus and stomach acts like a one-way valve. This is called the Lower Esophageal Sphincter, or LES. It only opens when you swallow. Otherwise it is always tightly closed which prevents stomach acid from backsplashing up into your esophagus. In this patient, LES valve is always a little open which allows stomach contents to reflux back up into his esophagus. This patient was treated with daily medication to reduce the acid reflux and the ulcers healed and he has had no further bouts of heartburn.

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Three Rivers Endoscopy Scope Cam

Esophageal Ulcers due to Acid Reflux


Text & Images Courtesy of Three Rivers Endoscopy Center
© Dr. Robert Fusco, Three Rivers Endoscopy Center, All Rights Reserved

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