The yield of a continuously patent gastroesophageal junction during upper endoscopy as a predictor of esophagitis in children

Nataly Zion, Elena Chemodanov, Arie Levine, Igor Sukhotnik, Jacob Bejar, Ron Shaoul

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and Aims : Over the last years we have noted an association between the endoscopic finding of a continuously patent gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) throughout the procedure and macroscopic or microscopic esophagitis. We could not find documentation for these endoscopic findings as a predictor of esophagitis in the literature. We aimed to find an association between these findings and microscopic and macroscopic esophagitis. Methods: During upper endoscopy, we routinely observe the GEJ for about 60 s and note the behavior of the GEJ and esophageal contractions. Patients with a persistently patent GEJ were recorded. A group of patients referred for upper endoscopy for reasons other than suspected reflux, whose esophagus was normal, and patients with reflux symptoms served as a control groups. Results: We found 21 patients (3.0%) in whom a patent GEJ had been noted. No significant age differences were noted between study and control groups. Eighteen out of 21 patients (86%) in the study group had varying degrees of microscopic esophagitis ranging from mild to severe (ten with mild esophagitis, three with moderate esophagitis, and five with severe esophagitis). Interestingly, ten out of 18 (55%) study patients with esophagitis on biopsies had no evidence of additional esophageal abnormality. Although all control patients had a normally appearing esophagus on upper endoscopy, 8/26 (31%) had mild esophagitis on biopsies. Differences were statistically significant (p < 0.001). Conclusions: A continuously patent GEJ predicts quite accurately the presence of esophagitis in biopsies and may serve an additional endoscopic finding for the diagnosis of esophagitis especially non-erosive GER.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3102-3107
Number of pages6
JournalDigestive Diseases and Sciences
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2010


  • Children
  • Esophagitis
  • Gastroesophageal junction
  • Gastroesophageal reflux
  • Lower esophageal sphincter
  • Motility
  • Upper endoscopy


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