Actinomycotic infection of the oesophagus

J Infect. 2005 Aug;51(2):E39-43. doi: 10.1016/j.jinf.2004.08.011.


Actinomycotic infections involving the oesophagus are uncommon but have been reported in both immunocompromised and immunocompetent individuals. We report a case of actinomycosis oesophagitis in a patient with lung cancer who received chemo- and radiotherapy. This patient was admitted with severe dysphagia and odynophagia and biopsy from an oesophageal ulcer found on oesophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) revealed actinomycosis. The patient was treated with intravenous penicillin G followed by ceftriaxone with clinical improvement and repeat EGD showed reduction in the size of the oesophageal ulcer, but he relapsed due to non-compliance. We review the English literature regarding the clinical features, diagnosis, and management of actinomycotic infections of the oesophagus.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Actinomyces / isolation & purification*
  • Actinomycosis / diagnosis*
  • Actinomycosis / drug therapy
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Ceftriaxone / therapeutic use
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Endoscopy, Digestive System
  • Esophageal Diseases / microbiology*
  • Esophageal Diseases / pathology
  • Esophagus / microbiology*
  • Esophagus / pathology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Penicillin G / therapeutic use
  • Recurrence
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Treatment Refusal
  • Ulcer / microbiology*
  • Ulcer / pathology


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Ceftriaxone
  • Penicillin G