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Imaging of Nonneoplastic Esophageal Pathologies

  • Elena Lucia Indino
  • Alessandro di Gaeta
  • Gianmarco Andreoli
  • Maurizio Del Monte
  • Valeria Panebianco
Chapter

Abstract

The esophagus is an organ which consists of a fibromuscular tube which enables the passage of food. This transmission is aided by peristaltic contractions, from the pharynx to the stomach, where the process of digestion reaches the acme. Efficient transport through the esophagus requires the organ either to be patent and well canalized or to have adequate motility. This consists of coordinating sequential contraction that mobilizes the bolus from above and clears acid and bile reflux from below. Dysfunction of this integrated muscular motion reduces progression of bolus and causes a distressing sense of dysphagia, chest pain, and regurgitation, or leads to other severe conditions (i.e., ab ingestis pneumonia).

In this scenario modern imaging techniques, either invasive or noninvasive, concede an early and accurate diagnosis that radically changed the approach to those disorders. In fact a predominant role is played by contrast-enhanced computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), but conventional radiology (barium esophagography; endoscopic ultrasonography, EUS) is still essential. Among those techniques, dynamic MRI of the esophagus has developed a great potential, with the introduction of ultrafast MR sequences, which have decreased scan times, granting a minor exposure to ionizing radiation.

Keywords

Esophagus Esophagus congenital malformation Esophagus motility Hiatus hernia Esophageal trauma Esophageal atresia Achalasia Esophagitis, reflux 

Abbreviations

CES

Congenital esophageal stenosis

CT

Computed tomography

DES

Diffuse esophageal spasm

EA

Esophageal atresia

Gd

Gadolinium

GERD

Gastroesophageal reflux disease

HU

Hounsfield unit

IEM

Ineffective esophageal motility

MRI

Magnetic resonance imaging

NEMD

Nonspecific esophageal motility dysfunction

SE

Scleroderma of the esophagus

TEF

Tracheoesophageal fistula

UES

Upper esophageal sphincter

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elena Lucia Indino
    • 1
  • Alessandro di Gaeta
    • 1
  • Gianmarco Andreoli
    • 2
  • Maurizio Del Monte
    • 1
  • Valeria Panebianco
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Radiological, Oncological and Anatomopatological SciencesSapienza—University of Rome, Policlinico Umberto IRomeItaly
  2. 2.Hospital Policlinico Umberto I of RomeRomeItaly

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