How It Feels
The local anesthetic sprayed into your nose and throat usually tastes slightly bitter and will make your tongue and throat feel numb and swollen.
When the tube goes through your nose or
mouth into your esophagus, you may feel like coughing or gagging. The test may
be easier if you try to take slow, deep breaths. You may not like the taste of
the lubricant on the tube.
If you have a test that involves adding
acid to your stomach, you may have heartburn pain and other symptoms of acid
If you have the wireless pH monitoring, you may be able to feel the capsule in your esophagus. You will not feel the capsule when it detaches and passes through your intestines and out of your body in your stool.
After the test is over, your nose and throat may feel sore. But
this should improve within a day or so.
The chances that you will have problems from an
esophagus test are rare.
- You may get a nosebleed.
- You may have irregular heartbeats (arrhythmias).
tube may go down the windpipe (trachea) instead of the esophagus as it is being
- You may vomit material from your stomach and then breathe
it into your lungs (aspiration).
- The tube may make a hole in the
Esophagus tests measure muscle pressure
and movement, coordination, and strength of the tube that connects the throat
to the stomach (esophagus). They test how well the ring of muscles
(sphincters) at the top and bottom of the esophagus work. Esophagus tests also measure the movement and volume of gas, liquid, and solid through the esophagus and its pH (acid or nonacid). Results are usually
available within a few days.
- The pH of the esophagus is not acidic.
- If acid is placed in the stomach, the pH of the esophagus does not go down.
- The pH of the lower esophagus is
- If acid is placed in the stomach, the pH of the lower esophagus goes down.
- The pressure of the muscle contractions
that move food down the esophagus is normal.
- The muscle
contractions follow a normal pattern down the esophagus.
- The pressure at the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is normal.
Muscle spasms are present in the
- Contractions along the esophagus are
weak or uncoordinated.
- The LES pressure is low.
- The LES
pressure is high and fails to relax after swallowing.
Many conditions can change the results
of esophagus tests. Your doctor will discuss any significant abnormal results
with you in relation to your symptoms and past health.
What Affects the Test
Reasons you may not be able to
have the test or why the results may not be helpful include:
- Taking certain medicines. Many medicines can affect the results of pH testing or esophageal manometry. Make sure you follow your doctor's instructions about which medicines to stop or to take before and during testing.
Smoking or drinking alcohol
within 24 hours of the test.
- Eating or drinking within 8 hours of
the test, unless you are having prolonged pH monitoring at home. If you are having prolonged pH monitoring, try to eat normally and do your normal activities.
- Detachment of the wireless pH capsule before the end of the recording time (usually 24 or 48 hours).
- Movement of the catheter when you swallow.