Office-based unsedated ultrathin esophagoscopy in a primary care setting

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12 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: Gastroesophageal reflux disease is common and with time may be complicated by Barrett's esophagus and esophageal adenocarcinoma. Upper gastrointestinal endoscopy, including esophagoscopy, is the procedure of choice to diagnose Barrett's esophagus and other esophageal disease. The use of unsedated ultrathin esophagoscopy (UUE) has been reported by gastroenterologists in specialized endoscopy units and otolaryngologists in outpatient otolaryngology offices, but UUE has not been previously described in a primary care setting. This study examines the feasibility of office-based UUE in primary care. METHODS: This study is a retrospective chart review in a university-based family medicine clinic in the southeastern United States. Charts were reviewed of 56 adult outpatients who were referred for further evaluation of reflux symptoms that persisted after at least 4 weeks of therapy with histamine 2 receptor agonists or proton pump inhibitors and who elected to undergo UUE in the primary care setting. Patient demographics, procedure indications and findings, changes in clinical management, and procedure times were recorded. RESULTS: One hundred percent of patients asked to participate in UUE were willing to undergo the procedure (mean age 48.3 ± 1.6 y, 57.1% women); 95% of the patients tolerated UUE. Barrett's esophagus was diagnosed in 5.7% (n = 3) of the patients. Mean procedure time was 5.5 ± 1.7 min. No complications were reported in this series. CONCLUSIONS: Initial data suggest that UUE is feasible in primary care, with the majority of patients tolerating the procedure. UUE may be an efficient method of examining the distal esophagus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)126-130
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of family medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2005


  • Endoscopy, gastrointestinal
  • Family practice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Family Practice


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