Objective: Several studies suggest that patients with esophageal peptic strictures have a high prevalence of Barrett's esophagus. However, these studies did not include appropriate control groups, were retrospective in nature, or did not strictly define Barrett's esophagus. Our aim was to compare the prevalence of Barrett's esophagus in patients with and without gastroesophageal reflux disease strictures in a prospective study. Methods: Seventy-nine patients referred for endoscopy for gastroesophageal reflux disease symptoms were evaluated. We collected demographic information and an esophageal symptom assessment. Biopsy specimens were obtained from peptic strictures, Schatzki rings, or from any areas of columnar-lined esophagus or mucosal injury. Barrett's esophagus was strictly defined as the presence of intestinal metaplasia from tubular esophagus. Results: There were 46 patients without strictures and 28 patients with peptic strictures. Five patients had Schatzki's rings. The prevalence of intestinal metaplasia was 23.9% in patients without strictures, and 25% in patients with peptic strictures (p = NS). There was no difference in prevalence of short- or long-segment Barrett's esophagus between the groups. Patients with strictures were older than patients without strictures (mean age 58.9 vs 48.6 yr), and more likely to have mucosal injury (50% vs 26.1%). Otherwise, there were no significant differences with regards to gender, race, heartburn duration or frequency. Conclusions: Barrett's esophagus, as defined by the presence of intestinal metaplasia in the tubular esophagus, is equally common in patients with and without peptic strictures. There does not appear to be an association between Barrett's esophagus and peptic strictures.
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