The literal definition of dysphagia is “disturbed eating”. However, it is more accurately described in clinical practice as a sensation of food or liquid being stuck in the esophagus or chest. If this sensation is associated with pain, it is labeled odynophagia, and if it is associated with persistent obstruction and bolus retention, it is categorized as a food impaction. Through research and technological advances, we continue to expand our understanding of the etiologies and underlying pathophysiology relating to this complaint. However, for now, our clinical algorithms focus on endoscopy and manometry to break down dysphagia into three categories: obstructive dysphagia, esophageal motility disorders, and functional dysphagia. Here, we review some critical pitfalls in our current clinical diagnoses, new proposed underlying mechanisms of esophageal motor disorders, and developing technologies to aid in diagnosis and treatment.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)