How We Can Help
Barrett’s Esophagus Treatment Information
We provide highly advanced endoscopic procedures for the treatment of Barrett’s esophagus with high-grade dysplasia.
- Medicines. If you have GERD, your physician will prescribe acid-suppressing medicines to prevent further damage to your esophagus and promote healing of esophageal tissues.
- Endoscopic mucosal resection (EMR). Our expertise in endoscopy allows us to take larger and deeper biopsies and resections of abnormal esophagus cells that are precancerous or early stage cancers. If EMR is used for cancer, an endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) may be done first to ensure the cancer cells are only in the top layer of your esophagus lining. More than half of patients referred to IU Health for Barrett’s esophagus undergo EMR for treatment of high-grade dysplasia and irregularities in their esophagus tissues.
- Radiofrequency ablation (RFA). This procedure uses radio waves delivered by endoscope to heat and kill Barrett’s and dysplastic cells in your esophagus. RFA treats the first, or mucosal, layer of your esophagus lining and is highly successful at getting rid of abnormal tissue.
- Cryotherapy. This treatment freezes high-grade dysplasia cells with carbon dioxide and liquid nitrogen. An endoscope is used to apply the therapy.
- Argon plasma coagulation (APC). APC is a thermal therapy used to cauterize diseased tissues in the esophagus to stop bleeding. An endoscope is used to deliver this treatment, which is often applied after polyp removal or resection.
- Dilation. If your esophagus is narrowed by thickened and hardened tissue, your physician may stretch it to widen the space.
- Surgery. Your physician may perform surgery to remove a large part of your affected esophagus. Your esophagus is then rebuilt and reattached to your stomach.
- Follow-up. When dysplasia is present, in addition to treatment, we monitor Barrett’s esophagus patients every six to 12 months. This allows us to take additional biopsies to check your esophagus cells and track any dysplasia. There is a 30 percent recurrence rate for Barrett’s esophagus, even if earlier treatments result in a complete response.
Barrett’s Esophagus Locations & Physicians
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Barrett’s Esophagus Support Services
Learn more about Barrett’s Esophagus treatments at these websites:
A Sampling of Barrett’s Esophagus Support Services
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
This service of the National Institute of Health provides patient information about Barrett’s esophagus, its causes, treatments, resources and research.
American Cancer Society
This national cancer group offers patient information about Barrett’s esophagus, its treatment and follow-up care.
American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
This site describes Barrett’s esophagus and its treatments. It also offers information on gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) and other related conditions.