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Esophageal dilation is a medical procedure performed to widen a narrowed or constricted portion of the esophagus The dilation procedure aims to improve swallowing and alleviate symptoms associated with esophageal narrowing.

There are different techniques used for esophageal dilation, including:

  • Balloon dilation
  • Bougie dilation
  • Endoscopic incisional therapy

Why and when is it done

Esophageal dilation procedures are performed to address esophageal strictures or narrowing of the esophagus.

  • The most common indication for esophageal dilation is difficulty swallowing, known as dysphagia
  • Esophageal strictures can be caused by various conditions, including GERD, Eosinophilic Esophagitis, Peptic Ulcer Disease, Radiation Therapy, Surgical Scarring
  • For diagnostic and therapeutic procedures

Benefits of Dilatation

  • The primary goal of esophageal dilation is to improve swallowing ability and alleviate dysphagia
  • Esophageal strictures can cause discomfort, pain, and the inability to eat or drink properly. Esophageal dilation aims to alleviate these symptoms
  • Restoration of nutritional intake
  • Esophageal dilation is typically performed using endoscopic techniques, which are minimally invasive for quicker recovery
  • Reversible and repeatable procedure

Risks associated with Dilatation

While esophageal dilation procedures are generally considered safe, there are potential risks and complications associated with the procedure.

  • Immediate bleeding during the procedure
  • Esophageal injury or perforation during the procedure
  • Risk of infection
  • Adverse reaction to sedation and anesthesia

How is the procedure performed

During an dilation procedure, the following steps are typically involved

  • Fasting is mandatory for clear view during surgery and low risk of infection. You may also receive sedation or anesthesia to help you relax and minimize any discomfort.
  • An anesthetic spray will be used to keep your mouth open along with mouth guard
  • The endoscope is inserted into your mouth to visualize the narrowed area structure
  • Once the stricture is identified, the doctor will choose an appropriate dilation method based on the severity and location of the stricture
  • After careful evaluation, the endoscope will be removed and post procedure instructions to be followed.