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Cancer Health Center

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Esophageal Cancer Screening (PDQ®): Screening - Health Professional Information [NCI] - Evidence of Benefit


Other techniques to potentially identify dysplastic epithelium that could then be sampled extensively include chromoendoscopy [31] and laser-induced fluorescence spectroscopy.[29,32]

Evidence of Harm

Screening for esophageal cancer by the use of blind nonendoscopically directed balloon cytological sampling for squamous cell carcinoma is minimally inconvenient and uncomfortable. Endoscopic screening for esophageal adenocarcinoma is expensive, inconvenient, and usually requires sedation.

Complications such as perforation and bleeding can occur. The incidence of complications including perforation, respiratory arrest, and myocardial infarction, has been estimated to be 0 to 13 per 10,000 procedures with an associated mortality of 0 to 0.8 per 10,000 procedures.[33,34]

Individuals who are informed they have Barrett esophagus may consider themselves to be ill even though their risk of developing cancer is very low.


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This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

WebMD Public Information from the National Cancer Institute

Last Updated: May 28, 2015
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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Esophageal Cancer Screening (PDQ®): Screening - Health Professional Information [NCI] Topics

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