Oesophageal Patients Association
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Update .. had oesoph stretch .. nxt endosc with ultrasound

Hi .. update after my latest procedure; oesoph stretch. Your comments/advice much appreciated. Many thanks. Gary.


Diagnosed hiatus hernia HH about 10yrs ago but not treated as not causing probs. Put on signif weight 4/5 years ago and reflux started; did nothing about it (idiot) .. swallowing difficulties worse over time. Went nhs aug16. Had 2 endoscs .. ct scan + barium meal. Found oesoph stricture; oesoph narrowed to 8mm. Oesoph had become funnel shaped: dilated at top (food backup), narrow at bottom. HH causes a virtual right angled bend in my oesoph: so food lodges and may ferment. No signs of C so far but further checks reqd on composition of stricture. Put on 20mm omeprazole/day. Intentional 4 stone weight loss in 2 yrs (diet/fitness); weight loss has caused hospital some concern.


Aged 59. Keep fit and try to eat well. Feel good. Zest for life. Dont get abnormally tired - can do tough 1hr military style gym session (3x/wk) followed by 8-10hrs as london black cab driver. Recently 3 of my kids at home had flu like symptons and i managed to come thru flu-less; hopefully indicates immune system ok. Weight stable around 13.5 stone.


Narrowing means further intra oesoph checks a problem as difficult to get camera down. On 27oct had stretch and further biopsies. Stretch successful from 8mm to 20mm but doctor says wouldnt want to stretch further in case of split. No visible signs of C. I feel fine after stretch and swallowing, not perfect, but improved.


Hospital have just rung. Ive got 3 issues going on a. possibility of C in stricture .. b. suspected alchalasia (functional oesoph problem making it difficult for food to travel from oesoph into stomach) .. c. HH. Central London hospital .. i yhink cancer unit ... will contact me to arrange an endoscopy with ultrasound. This will provide further info on the C situation and poss more info re any alchalasia. No plans to address HH yet as treatment dependent on test results.

So fingers xd and onwards and upwards. I read most posts and find them very informative. Wishing you all every success with your treatments. Thks for taking time to read my post. Cheers. G

4 Replies

How refreshing to read such a comprehensive and sensible post. You have obviously got what it takes to beat this thing. Good luck and please keep us updated.


Well done on keeping fit - I am sure that must be an antidote to driving a cab. Achalasia is treated by the same surgeons who would do operations for cancer, so you are going to the right place. The achalasia is normally caused by nerve endings not driving the muscles that perform the swallowing / motility function, but perhaps there is some kind of reaction created by your hiatus hernia that is causing the trouble?

Ideally, the food should flow through to your stomach naturally, but this kink might well be a complication, slowing things up. They should be able to do a scan to clarify the cancer situation. If the weight loss is from fitness, diet and exercise that is a good thing, but they would be concerned about 'unintended' weight loss.

Long term exposure to reflux is not a good thing, and it might be the case that they may be able to repair your hiatus hernia and sort the other issues out in one operation, but the general rule is that if they can avoid surgery and achieve improvement without surgery then it is usually better.


You've had a lot to cope with ,a long journey! You sound very uncomplaining - I know "what good would it do "!

Hope your appointment comes through quickly and you know where you stand ,waiting for tests and results is the pits .Remember to ask when /likely time scale and method of delivery for results .

I was treated at St Thomas's and they are v v good .

Let us know how you get on .


Good luck! Hope all goes well


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