Daniel R. Sikavi, AB1, Jennifer X. Cai, MD, MPH1, Thomas L. Carroll, MD, MPH2, Walter W. Chan, MD, MPH1
1Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA; 2Brigha, Boston, MA
Introduction: Laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR) is a heterogeneous condition with various underlying pathologies. The effect of esophageal anatomy on LPR is unclear. Shorter distance between lower esophageal sphincter (LES) and upper esophageal sphincter (UES) may allow refluxate to more easily reach the pharynx. We aimed to examine the effect of esophageal length on reflux parameters and symptoms.
Methods: 115 consecutive patients (64% female, mean age 53.9 yrs) with suspected LPR referred for high-resolution manometry (HRM) and combined hypopharyngeal-esophageal multichannel intraluminal impedance-pH testing (HEMII-pH) at a tertiary center in 3/2018-5/2019 were enrolled. Validated symptom surveys were prospectively collected at time of testing, including Reflux Symptom Index (RSI) and 12-item short-form health survey (SF-12) for health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Esophageal length was measured from the distal margin of UES to the proximal margin of LES on HRM. Univariate analyses were performed with Pearson correlation or Student’s t-test. Generalized linear regression was used for multivariate analysis.
Results: Mean esophageal length on HRM was 20.4 cm (SD=2.2). Esophageal length was significantly shorter among patients with a hiatal hernia ≥2 cm (19.2 cm vs 20.6 cm, p=0.01), but did not correlate with any primary motility disorder per Chicago classification v3.0. Shorter esophageal length was significantly associated with higher acid exposure time and proximal reflux events on impedance, with a trend toward more total reflux events (Table 1). Esophageal length was also shorter among patients with pharyngeal reflux events on HEMII-pH compared to those without (20.0 cm vs 20.9 cm, p=0.04). Even after controlling for hiatal hernia size, esophageal length remained independently predictive of reflux severity and pharyngeal reflux events. There was a correlation between shorter esophageal length and more severe symptoms on the heartburn/chest pain/indigestion subscore of RSI, but not total RSI or throat symptom subscores (Table 2). Shorter esophageal length was associated with lower physical health scores on SF-12 for HRQOL (Figure 1).
Discussion: Shorter esophageal length is independently associated with increased reflux severity, proximal reflux, and pharyngeal reflux, even after controlling for hiatal hernia size. It also correlates with more severe typical reflux symptoms and physical HRQOL. Decreased esophageal length may play a role in the pathophysiology of reflux in patients with LPR symptoms.
Citation: Daniel R. Sikavi, AB; Jennifer X. Cai, MD, MPH; Thomas L. Carroll, MD, MPH; Walter W. Chan, MD, MPH. P0262 - SHORTER ESOPHAGEAL LENGTH IS ASSOCIATED WITH INCREASED PROXIMAL REFLUX AND SYMPTOM SEVERITY IN PATIENTS PRESENTING WITH LARYNGOPHARYNGEAL REFLUX (LPR) SYMPTOMS. Program No. P0262. ACG 2019 Annual Scientific Meeting Abstracts. San Antonio, Texas: American College of Gastroenterology.