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Indian J Surg. 2015 Feb;77(1):44-8. doi: 10.1007/s12262-013-0955-8. Epub 2013 Aug 2.

Pulsion Diverticulum of the Oesophagus: More than just an Out Pouch.

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Christian Medical College and Hospital, 4/2, New PG Quarters, Vellore, Tamil Nadu 632004 India.


Oesophageal diverticulum is divided into two types based on the aetiology: the pulsion and the traction diverticula. Pulsion diverticulum occurs due to increased intraluminal pressure. This can be of three types based on the location along the oesophagus: the Zenker's diverticulum (ZD), the mid-oesophageal diverticulum (MD) and the epiphrenic diverticulum (ED). A PubMed search was conducted for the words 'pulsion', 'diverticulum' and 'oesophagus' for all studies published from January 1980 to March 2013 in the English language. A total of 31 studies were identified, and out of which, five were not included in the review. The pulsion diverticulum of the oesophagus is an uncommon disorder. Its aetiology is related to the motility disorders of the oesophagus. Patients usually present with chest-related symptoms or oesophageal symptoms, which are related to the underlying motility disorder. Evaluation includes barium studies, gastrointestinal endoscopy, CT scan and oesophageal manometry. Surgery is the treatment of choice for symptomatic and large diverticula, although the outcome in asymptomatic patients is unknown. The surgical options include diverticulectomy or diverticulopexy with an adequate myotomy. Most patients with ZD are now treated by using endoscopic techniques, although no randomised trial has shown its superiority over the open technique. Minimally invasive surgery has also been used for patients with MD and ED. Although isolated case series has shown good improvement in symptoms and reduction in mortality with minimally invasive techniques in patients with ED, its role in thoracic oesophageal diverticulum is debated.


Diverticulum; Epiphrenic; Oesophagus; Pulsion; Zenker

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