Causes of Dysphagia ( Difficult Swallowing )

Here we will discuss the definition and causes of Dysphagia which is a common GIT symptom .

 Definition: It means Difficulty in swallowing


A. Causes in the Mouth :

  1. Stomatitis
  2. Glossitis.
  3.  Neoplasm of Tongue & Cheek.

B. Causes in the Pharynx:

 1. Pharyngitis.
 2. Pharyngeal Diverticulum.
 3.Retro-pharyngeal Abscess.

 5. Para-tonsiller Abscess.
 6. Post-cricoid carcinoma
 7.Plummer Vinson syndrome .

 N.B   Plummer-Vinson syndrome: (Rare)
·   Incidence : Common with post-menopausal female.
·   Aetiology   : It  iS due to Fe deficiency Anaema,

Characters : It is characterized by dysphagia (spasm), microcytic Anaemia, splenomegaly, Achlorohydria glossitis, Angular stomatitis and spooning of Nails.
Treatment     1.Dilatation for dysphagia.
                             2. Fe therapy for Anaemia

C.  functional Causes:

1. Neuritis of-glossopharyngeal or vagus nerve.
2. Myasthenia gravis or Tetanus. Gl 3. Hysterical.
4. Motility disorders e.g. Corkscrew (Diffuse spasm)

N.B   Diffuse oesophageal spasm: {Cork screw}
·  The disease differs from achalasia by characteristic presence of multiple areas of spasm may be seen throughout the oesophagus.
- Corkscrew oesophagus presented with mild dysphagia with pain of swallowing felt mainly in the root of the neck.
• Treatment : Dilatation or long myotomy.

D. Causes in the  Oesophagus : 

Causes in the Lumen:
e.g. Foreign bodies.
Causes in the Wall 
1. Congenital: Oesophageal Atresia. 2.Traumatic: Corrosive stricture.
3. Neuromuscular: Achalasia.
4.  Hiatus Hernia.
5. Neoplastic : Carcinoma.
6. Inflammatory as Reflux Oesophagitis.

Causes Outside the Wall 
1. Malignant Thyroid .
2. Aortic Aneurysm.
3. Malignant L.Ns.
4. Dysphagia Lusoria

Comparison between the common Causes of Dysphagia 

Causes of Dysphagia ( Difficult Swallowing )
Dr.Tamer Mobarak


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