Esophageal tone in patients with total aperistalsis: Gastroesophageal reflux disease versus achalasia

Fermín Mearin, Celia Vasconez, Natalia Zárate, Juan R. Malagelada

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Abstract

We have evaluated esophageal tone in two different conditions that, in some cases, similarly impair phasic esophageal motility. Studies were performed in 14 healthy volunteers, 10 patients with total esophageal aperistalsis secondary to gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and 25 untreated achalasia patients. We quantified esophageal compliance and relaxation induced by a nitric oxide donor using a barostat. Intraesophageal volume at a minimal distending pressure (2 mmHg) was not significantly different among all three groups (4.1 ± 0.7, 3.8 ± 0.7, and 4.2 ± 1.2 ml for healthy, GERD, and achalasia groups, respectively). Esophageal compliance was significantly increased (P < 0.05 vs. healthy group) in the two groups of patients with aperistalsis (1.9 ± 0.2, 3.0 ± 0.2, and 3.1 ± 0.3 ml/mmHg for healthy, GERD, and achalasia groups, respectively). Esophageal relaxation was decreased in GERD patients (Δ diameter: 0.4 ± 0.1 cm) and increased in achalasia patients (Δ diameter: 1.3 ± 0.4 cm) relative to healthy subjects (Δ diameter: 0.9 ± 0.2 cm) (P < 0.05 for GERD vs. achalasia and healthy groups). Our results indicate that diseases that similarly impair phasic esophageal motility may affect esophageal tone differently.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology
Volume279
Issue number2 42-2
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sep 2000

Keywords

  • Amyl nitrite
  • Esophageal barostat
  • Esophageal motility
  • Esophageal tonic activity
  • Nitric oxide donor

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    Mearin, F., Vasconez, C., Zárate, N., & Malagelada, J. R. (2000). Esophageal tone in patients with total aperistalsis: Gastroesophageal reflux disease versus achalasia. American Journal of Physiology - Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology, 279(2 42-2).