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Article
January 1950

CARDIOSPASM WITH THORACIC STOMACH AND CONGENITAL SHORTENING OF THE ESOPHAGUS

Author Affiliations

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA

Arch Otolaryngol. 1950;51(1):102-103. doi:10.1001/archotol.1950.00700020121009

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Abstract

An elderly woman, at a period of mental stress, experienced sudden dysphagia. There were intermissions in which swallowing was possible, with a gradual return to normal. Some dyspepsia with flatulence remained. Several years later, again at a time of mental distress, the obstruction recurred. Swallowing of food caused a sense of pressure and fulness behind the sternum. There was no salivation. A roentgenogram after a barium swallow showed moderate dilatation of the esophagus to the level of the seventh thoracic vertebra (fig. 1). The stomach was not well outlined, as there was vomiting of the barium. Esophagoscopic examination demonstrated dilatation of the esophagus without residual food or ulceration and an obstruction at this level. A small Jackson bougie, 12 French, passed through the narrowing when relaxation with the anesthetic occurred. Before this, a filiform bougie would not pass. The transition from tight contraction to partial relaxation of the spasm was

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