Every year, up to 40 thousand new cases of esophageal cancer are recorded in the European countries. The craft of the disease is the fact that it runs almost imperceptibly at early stages. Therefore, the majority of patients are diagnosed with the process when it reaches stage 3 or 4, when there are difficulties with swallowing and propulsion of food. To facilitate the condition, such patients may be recommended endoscopic bougienage and stent overlay.
This disease is diagnosed in several stages. During the first visit, the oncologist specifies the complaints, examines the patient and collects his/her case history. To confirm the diagnosis and to assess the severity and location of the tumor process, a set of tests is prescribed:
- common and biochemical blood counts,
- blood test for tumor markers,
- abdominal ultrasound,
- CT or MRI scan of the chest and abdomen,
At the conclusion, a gastroscopy with biopsy is performed, the findings of which determine the nature and morphological type of the tumor.
Based on these data, the physician decides whether bougienage and esophagus stenting are required.
On the eve of intervention, the patient underdoes a chemotherapy course. This approach allows reducing the tumor size and facilitates the surgical manipulation.
The surgery is performed under general anesthesia. A flexible rod, bougie, is introduced into the lumen of esophagus under endoscopic control. Pushing it through the narrowed area, the surgeon seeks the lumen expansion. Then, a special metal tube, i.e. a stent, is inserted into the affected area to ensure a subsequent normal catering of the patient. This procedure has a durable effect.
After surgery, the patient remains under medical supervision. To prevent complications, s/he is prescribed antibiotics. If the patient feels good, s/he allowed to leave the hospital on day 6. Before discharge, the patient visits the oncologist, who provides recommendations for further treatment.