What is Esophageal Cancer?

Esophageal cancer is cancer that develops in the esophagus.

Esophageal Cancer Causes

There is no known cause for esophageal cancer.

Types of Esophageal Cancer

  • Adenocarcinoma: Most common type, develops in the glandular tissue
  • Squamous cell carcinoma: Grows in the cells that form the top layer of the lining of the esophagus, known as squamous cells. This type of cancer can grow anywhere along the esophagus.

Esophageal Cancer Symptoms

Often, there are no symptoms in the early stages of esophageal cancer. Symptoms do not appear until the disease is more advanced. The following are the most common symptoms of esophageal cancer:

  • Difficult or painful swallowing
  • Pain in the throat or back
  • Severe weight loss.
  • Hoarseness or chronic cough that does not go away
  • Vomiting
  • Blood in stool or black stools
  • Heartburn

Esophageal Cancer Risk Factors

The following factors can put someone at a greater risk for developing esophageal cancer:

  • Age: 65 years+.
  • Gender: males have greater risk
  • Tobacco use
  • Alcohol use
  • Obesity
  • Acid reflux disease

Diagnosing Esophageal Cancer

In addition to a complete medical history and physical examination, diagnostic procedures for esophageal cancer may include the following:

Treatment for esophageal cancer

Specific treatment for esophageal cancer will be determined by your doctor based on:

  • Your age, overall health, and medical history
  • Extent of the disease
  • Your tolerance for specific medications, procedures, or therapies

Treatment of esophageal cancer may include:

For more information on esophageal cancer or to schedule an appointment, contact Christian Hospital at 314.747.9355 or toll-free at 877.747.9355 or email us.