How Is It Diagnosed?
Of course, the first step to receiving any diagnosis is for the patient to accurately report any and all symptoms to their physician. The physician then will need to perform a number of diagnostic procedures in order to rule out other possible diagnoses. They will likely utilize either X-ray or CT scan technology in order to get images of the esophagus. However, an endoscopy will provide them with more detailed images of this internal structure because it involves the insertion of a camera on a tube down the esophagus. This procedure doesn’t take long and comes with minimal risk but it can provide a lot of information about the condition of the esophagus and sphincter.
Another critical test is the barium swallow test, which consists of the patient swallowing barium and the physician tracking its travel down the esophagus. The physician may also run an esophageal manometry, which also involves the insertion of a tube down the esophagus, similar to the process involved in an endoscopy. However, this tube records the muscle activity throughout providing the physician with a better idea of the functionality of the structures.