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Am J Gastroenterol. 1998 May;93(5):711-6.

Complete elimination of reflux symptoms does not guarantee normalization of intraesophageal acid reflux in patients with Barrett's esophagus.

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Gastroenterology Section, Palo Alto Veterans Affairs Health Care System, California 94304, USA.



Normalization of intraesophageal acid exposure is increasingly recognized as a desired goal in the management of Barrett's esophagus. In this prospective trial, we studied patients with Barrett's esophagus by 24-h intraesophageal pH monitoring after having completely eliminated their reflux symptoms with lansoprazole, to determine whether they had achieved normalization of intraesophageal pH.


Thirty patients with Barrett's esophagus, all of whom had presented with reflux symptoms, were treated with lansoprazole (15-30 mg/day) until they were asymptomatic. Twenty-four-hour ambulatory pH monitoring was performed while they were receiving lansoprazole and were asymptomatic.


Twelve patients (40%) showed persistent bipositional, pathologic acid reflux while on therapy, with a mean DeMeester score of 52.8 (95% CI: 33.8-71.8); the remaining 18 (60%) exhibited normalization of intraesophageal acid exposure with a score of 4.4 (95% CI: 2.3-6.6,p < 0.001). This inadequate control of intraesophageal pH is most likely due to incomplete gastric acid suppression induced by the drug and is associated with a variable acid (distal > proximal) exposure within the esophagus. The two groups were not different in regard to their symptom frequency and severity before therapy, amount of lansoprazole dosage required to eliminate symptoms, length of Barrett's metaplasia, presence of hiatal hernia, lower esophageal sphincter resting tone and length, or esophageal peristaltic function.


Complete symptom eradication with lansoprazole (15-30 mg daily) in patients with Barrett's esophagus does not guarantee normalization of intraesophageal pH profile. If the goal of therapy in such patients is to achieve complete intraesophageal acid suppression, 24-h ambulatory esophageal pH monitoring should be performed to titrate therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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