Black esophagus induced by severe vomiting in a healthy young man

Surg Endosc. 2003 Mar;17(3):521. doi: 10.1007/s00464-002-4248-8. Epub 2002 Dec 20.


Black esophagus is an uncommon entity that has been described only a few times previously. It is defined as a dark pigmentation of the esophagus associated with histologic mucosal necrosis. Most cases have no known etiology, although ischemia, nasogastric tube trauma, infection, gastric outlet obstruction, gastric volvulus, and hypersensitivity to antibiotics have all been suggested as possible causes. Herein we report the case of a young, healthy, athletic man who developed black esophagus due to severe vomiting after alcohol overindulgence and summarize the other published cases to date.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Esophageal Diseases / pathology*
  • Esophagoscopy
  • Esophagus / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Necrosis
  • Pigmentation Disorders / pathology*