Barrett's Esophagus

Last Modified: December 4, 2005


Dear OncoLink "Ask The Experts,"
I want to know what Barrett's Cancer is and if it is in the neck or throat?


Carolyn Vachani RN, MSN, AOCN, OncoLink's Medical Correspondent, responds:

Barrett's esophagus is not a cancer, but people who have it are at higher risk of developing cancer of the esophagus. The esophagus is the tube that connects your mouth to your stomach. Barrett's is described as ulcer-like lesions, most often caused by chronic reflux of gastric (stomach) acid into the esophagus. People who have documented Barrett's esophagus should have periodic screening by endoscope (a tube put down the esophagus) to identify any esophageal cancer early, when treatment is most successful.