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Digestion. 2001;64(1):1-8.

Dilated intercellular spaces as markers of reflux disease: histology, semiquantitative score and morphometry upon light microscopy.

Author information

1
Pathology Service 2, University of Brescia and Spedali Civili, Brescia, Italy.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND AIMS:

A recent electron microscopy study suggested that dilated intercellular spaces (DIS) are specific for acid reflux-damaged esophageal epithelium. Electron microscopy is, however, expensive and difficult to apply to routine biopsies. The aims of this study are to establish a method for assessing DIS on light microscopy of esophageal biopsies and to estimate its association with current clinicopathological parameters of esophagitis.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

21 patients with reflux symptoms were investigated. Light microscopy biopsies were assessed for DIS size by a semiquantitative method and computer-assisted, static morphometry. A DIS score accounting for DIS size and distribution was assigned to each patient and its association with 30 clinicopathological variables investigated by univariate and multivariate logistic regression.

RESULTS:

Both the semiquantitative method and static morphometry identified 4 different classes of DIS size. The DIS score was significantly and independently associated with the esophageal symptoms score, the histological score of esophagitis and the relevant morphometry data.

CONCLUSIONS:

DIS may be efficiently assessed during light microscopy of routine esophageal biopsies. Since correlation with both the histology and the symptoms of esophagitis, the DIS score may be considered a novel parameter of esophagitis and is suggested for the routine evaluation of esophageal biopsies in patients with reflux disease.

PMID:
11549831
DOI:
10.1159/000048833
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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