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Minerva Chirurgica 1999 December;54(12):869-84


language: Italian

Surgery of dysphagic disease of the esophagus personal experience of 349 cases

Tosato P., Vasapollo L., Passaro U., Scocchera F., Carnevale L., Tosato M., Corsini F., Marano S., Palermo S., Paolini A., Fegiz G.


The authors report their surgical experience relating to dysphagic diseases of the esophagus (349 cases). In the light of these results, they describe the different surgical techniques used in the various pathologies: 1) Esophageal diverticula: The value of a careful evaluation of subdiverticular spasm is emphasised using preoperative manometry in cervical and epiphrenic diverticula, leading to subdiverticular myotomy when present. 2) esophageal achalasia and intermediate motor disorder: A clear difference must be drawn between these two diseases owing to the different motor behaviour of the esophagus. Dilatation of the LES is only useful in intermediate motor disorder and should be avoided in esophageal achalasia where a gastroesophageal reflux is produced if dilatation fails. Intraoperative manometry is very useful during the extramucosa myotomy phases as an indication of the complete removal of the sphincteral barrier, thus avoiding the risk of persisting disease. 3) Non-neoplastic stenosis. In primary stenosis (caused by caustic agents, primary GER or associated with JE) a conservative approach is advisable, whereas in iatrogenic stenosis (mainly linked to dilatation or cardiac surgery), owing to the anatomic complexity of the esophagogastric junction, a more radical approach is often required in the form of esophagogastric resection or even subtotal esophagectomy. 4) Neoplastic stenosis: Leiomyomas, although unusual, represent a clear indication for thoracoscopic access, provided that the dimensions allow it. Esophageal cancers represent a major surgical problem. A radical approach is represented by TE and the subsequent use of the stomach, or more rarely, the colon to reconstruct the alimentary tract. In spite of the very low resecability rate owing to locoregional spreading, until recently palliative surgery was essential to allow patients to eat. The introduction of autoexpanding prostheses, positioned using endoscopic methods, has provided a better solution to this problem.

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