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Esophageal spasm?

  I have recently been diagnosed with esophageal spasms.  After reading
  many of the postings here I am concerned that I may have to continue to live with this.
  What are the options?  Does it ever go away?
  Why does one get it in the first place?  Is is viral, bacterial, or
Dear Nr and other respondents to this question,
Esophageal spasm is a conditin of increased muscle tone in the esophagus with a loss of the norma; rhythmic contractions necessary to transmit food from mouth to anus.  The cause of esophageal spasm is unknown.  Symptoms can  include recurrent chest pain, difficulty swallowing solids and liquids, vomiting and weight loss.  Diagnosis requires exclusion of structural esophageal abnormalities and characterization of the abnormal motor function.
Treatment consists of smooth muscle relaxants e.g. nitrates, calcium channel anatgonists and anxiolytics.  In some cases surgery (long myotomy) is offered,  It is currently too premature to judge the utility of this new therapy.
This information is presented for educational purposes only.  Ask specific questions to your personal physician.
If you wish a second opinion, we would be happy to see you in the Division of Gastroenterology of Henry Ford hospital, located in Detroit MI.  You can arrange an appoinment with Dr. fogel, one of our experts in esophageal disease, by calling our Physician Referal Line at (800)653-6568
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