What Tests are Used to Diagnose and Treat Esophageal Disorders?


In the event you or a loved one develop a problem involving your esophagus, it's necessary to have it evaluated so that the proper diagnosis and treatment option can be conducted. You may be wondering, how does that happen? At Arizona Digestive Health, our GI doctors perform a variety of tests to diagnose esophageal issues that may be impacting your health. Please don't let an esophageal condition continue to negatively affect your life and health. For more information about the examinations and treatments for esophageal disorders in Phoenix, AZ, please request an appointment with one of our gastroenterology physicians. Read below to explore how the various tests work.

How does an EGD (esophagogastroduodenoscopy) work?

An esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) is an endoscopic procedure that is carried out to examine the upper portion of the digestive tract. Also called an upper endoscopy, it employs the use of a special camera attached to the end of the endoscope, or tube.

To begin the procedure, the endoscope is passed down through the throat to help our providers visualize the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum. The camera transfers the images that are captured to our computer monitor so that our gastroenterologists can examine them. After the pictures are reviewed, our experts can render a diagnosis and explain the proper treatment method optimal for your health. An esophagogastroduodenoscopy exam might be prescribed if you’ve suffered from the following symptoms:

  • Recurrent acid reflux
  • Non-cardiac chest pain
  • Anemia
  • Pain in the abdomen
  • Functional indigestion
  • Heartburn
  • Vomiting blood
  • Frequent nausea or vomiting
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Difficulty swallowing

The skilled team at Arizona Digestive Health can provide further information about this exam and if it could help address your concerns.

How can a CT scan detect and address esophageal conditions?

A diagnostic computed tomography or CT imaging approach is an extremely helpful tool for your GI provider when it pertains to esophageal problems. The CT scans serve as the primary step when assessing the esophagus. As radiographic procedures, CT scans offer a clear image of the area in question. Once captured, the images are then passed on to your physician, who studies them and can decide the next steps to follow to help ease the symptoms of your esophageal problem.

Our Phoenix, AZ gastroenterology doctors may recommend CTs to provide an accurate diagnosis of esophageal concerns. CTs can provide assistance with:

  • Detecting cancer of the esophagus
  • Determining if esophageal cancer has spread
  • Detecting abnormalities in the esophagus
  • Identifying the presence of irritation or inflammation

When would a barium x-ray be needed?

A barium x-ray is scheduled if a radiographic assessment of your GI tract is ideal. It is often conducted to diagnose areas of concern, such as ulcers, tumors, polyps, strictures, inflammatory conditions, and hernias.

The barium utilized in the exam is a white, dry chalky powder-like material. The powder is added to a liquid so that it can be ingested. When it has been ingested, the barium solution will line the interior walls of the esophagus, stomach, and small bowel. The visibility of the barium liquid permits our GI specialists to screen for variations that might not be visualized when normal x-ray images are carried out.

There are various types of barium x-ray exams that may be performed. These procedures include a barium enema to assess the lower GI tract, a barium small-bowel follow-through, and a barium swallow to assess the upper GI tract. If you a member of your family believes you would need tests for esophagus disorders, please request an appointment with us without delay.

Get specialized esophageal treatment in Phoenix, AZ

In the event you require treatment for esophageal issues, you can trust your health to the doctors at Arizona Digestive Health. Our staff will work closely with you to identify a treatment approach that targets your symptoms. Reach out to us today to request a visit with one of our esophageal specialists in Phoenix, to get the care you deserve.