A groundbreaking study from Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago has determined the threshold for a new measure of early scarring in the esophagus of children with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE), allowing for a immediate intervention during endoscopy to stop further damage and prevent food from getting stuck in the esophagus (feeding tube) of children with this condition. The results were published in the journal Clinical gastroenterology and hepatologyand were supported by the Campaign Urging Research for Eosinophilic Diseases (CURED) Foundation.
EoE is a chronic, immune-mediated disease of the esophagus that affects adults and children with a prevalence of 0.5 to 1 in 1000. If left untreated, chronic inflammation promotes scarring of the esophagus. esophagus, as well as the development of esophageal rings and strictures, which obstruct the passage of solid food and can cause impactions (when food gets stuck in the esophagus and cannot be dislodged).
The endoscopic functional luminal impedance probe (EndoFLIP) was used in the study to measure the “distensibility index,” which is a functional measure of the force required to open the esophagus. Previously, the extent of scar tissue in the esophagus could only be assessed visually during endoscopy, making it difficult to detect early changes and intervene before damage becomes more extensive.
This is a game changer in how we care for children with EoE. Now, if the distensibility is low, we can dilate the esophagus in the same procedure, and since we can locate the scars exactly, our intervention is more targeted and takes much less time. We are seeing improvements in symptoms, which is incredibly exciting. »
Joshua Wechsler, MD, MSCI, lead author, Medical Director of the Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Disease Program at Lurie Children’s, CURED Research Fellow at Lurie Children’s, and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.
Research at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago is conducted by the Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute. The Manne Research Institute is focused on improving the health of children, transforming pediatric medicine, and securing a healthier future through the relentless pursuit of knowledge. Lurie Children’s is ranked among the nation’s top children’s hospitals by US News & World Report. It is the pediatric training location of Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.
Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago