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Esophageal Manometry

Esophageal manometry is a test used to measure the function of both upper and lower esophageal sphincter (the valve that prevents reflux of gastric acid into the esophagus) and the muscles of the esophagus. This test will tell your doctor whether your esophagus has any abnormal contraction. To know why you might be experiencing a problem with your digestive system, it helps to understand the swallowing and digestive processes.

Esophagus

The esophagus is a muscular tube that connects your throat to your stomach. With each swallow the esophagus muscle contracts and pushes the food into the stomach. At the lower end of the esophagus, a valve (a high pressure zone area) remains closed except when food or liquid is swallowed or when you belch or vomit.

There are a number of symptoms that originate in the esophagus. These include difficulty swallowing food, heartburn, and chest pain. Additionally, an x-ray (barium swallow or upper GI series) or endoscopy may show abnormalities that need to be studied further by manometry. The exam is often done before and after medical or surgical treatments of the esophagus. Esophageal manometry is very effective in evaluating the difficulty in swallowing or heartburn and chest pain.
 
The success of the procedure depends on a number of factors. Please discuss the likelihood of success with your doctor before the procedure.
 
What if this procedure is not performed?
The doctor may not be able to confirm the cause of the problem. Please discuss specific risks of not having the procedure done with your doctor.
 
Nothing really takes the place of esophageal manometry.  
 

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