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Esophageal Manometry

Esophageal manometry uses a thin, pressure sensitive tube to measure the pressure inside the lower part of the esophagus. Pressures are transmitted to a computer analyzer that records pressures on moving graph paper, much like EKG waves. Your physician can analyze these pressure wave patterns to determine if they are normal or abnormal.

The purpose of esophageal manometry is to see if the esophagus is contracting and relaxing properly. The test helps diagnose any swallowing problems. Your health care provider may request that this test be performed if you have symptoms of acid reflux disease (GERD).

How do I prepare?

You should not have anything to eat or drink for 8 hours before the test. Your doctor will usually want to study the esophagus in its natural state, so he/she will inform you about what medications you may or may not take prior to the test.

What happens during and after the procedure?

With the patient lying on the side or seated in a chair, the tube is passed through the nose or mouth and into the stomach. Once in place, the tube is pulled slowly back into your esophagus.

When the tube is in your esophagus, you will be asked to swallow, either with or without water. The pressure of the muscle contractions will be measured along several sections of the tube.

While the tube is in place, other studies of your esophagus may be done. The tube is removed after the tests are completed. The test takes about 1 hour.

Patients can usually resume regular activity, eating, drinking and taking medicines immediately after the exam.

 
         
 

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