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J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2004 Oct;39(4):373-7.

Eosinophilic esophagitis in children: symptoms, histology and pH probe results.

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Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Department of Pediatrics, University of Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.



To review the authors' experience with eosinophilic esophagitis.


Between 1993 and 2001, the authors identified 12 patients with eosinophilic esophagitis defined on histologic criteria (> or = 20 eosinophils per high-power field in the distal esophageal epithelium). The authors reviewed medical records for details of clinical presentation; laboratory data; radiologic, endoscopic, and histologic findings; and the results of continuous esophageal pH probe monitoring.


Seventy-five percent of the patients were male. The median age at presentation was 10.8 years (range, 1-17 years). Commonly reported symptoms were dysphagia with solid food (66%), epigastric pain (42%), food impaction (50%), and vomiting (8%). Food allergy was reported in 50% and asthma in 33%. Peripheral eosinophilia (> 700/mm3) was found in 42%. Upper gastrointestinal series performed in eight patients, showed esophageal luminal narrowing in three. Computed tomography, performed in two patients, revealed thickening of the esophageal wall. Esophageal pH probe monitoring, performed in nine patients, revealed no abnormal acid reflux. All of the monitored patients had episodic alkalinization of the esophagus. Upper endoscopic analysis revealed white specks on the esophageal mucosa in 42%, esophageal narrowing in 33%, esophageal rings in 25%, and esophageal furrowing in 8%. The mean eosinophils per high-power field was 65 (range, 20-200). Histologic characteristics included juxtaluminar (33%) and peripapillary clusters of eosinophils (33%), increased papillary height (50%), and basal cell hyperplasia (34%).


Solid food dysphagia was the most common feature of eosinophilic esophagitis in our patients. Alkalinization of the esophagus was found in all nine pH probe recordings of eosinophilic esophagitis patients and may represent a previously unreported characteristic of the condition.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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