Esophagitis and esophageal stricture occur with disturbing frequency in patients who have undergone surgical operation. Although these conditions may follow any type of surgery after which a nasogastric tube is used, they occur much more commonly following surgery of the type that disturbs or alters the normal anatomy and physiology of the gastroeosphageal junction (for example, partial esophageal resection with esophagogastrostomy, esophagoplasty, total gastric resection, and the esophageal myotomy of Heller), whether a nasogastric tube is used postoperatively or not.
It is the purpose of this paper to emphasize the importance of preventing these complications by the selection of the proper surgical procedure and to stress the importance of early recognition of symptoms of esophagitis. Early diagnosis will enable the physician to initiate prompt treatment, and thereby to prevent the development of chronic, irreversible disease.
Anatomy and Physiology of the Cardioesophageal Junction
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