Argon plasma coagulation of gastric inlet patches for the treatment of globus sensation: it is an effective therapy in the long term

Digestion. 2013;88(3):165-71. doi: 10.1159/000355274. Epub 2013 Oct 18.


Aim: To determine the long-term effect of argon plasma coagulation (APC) of gastric inlet patches in the cervical esophagus for patients suffering from globus sensation.

Methods: We intended to follow up all patients between 2004 and 2011 (n = 49) who received argon plasma ablation of gastric inlet patches for globus sensation at our clinic. Symptoms were assessed by a visual analogue scale (VAS) in 31 of 49 patients. Follow-up endoscopy of the upper gastrointestinal tract was performed to confirm residual or relapsed cervical inlet patches.

Results: After a median period of 27 months, APC was assessed as a successful therapy in 23 of 31 patients (74%). VAS scores decreased significantly from 7.6 to 4.0 in the long term. Twenty-two of 31 patients were willing to undergo follow-up endoscopy. Endoscopy revealed recurrent/residual gastric inlet patches after APC in 11 of 22 cases. These patients suffered from a significant relapse of symptoms in the postinterventional period (p < 0.001).

Conclusion: This retrospective study indicates that APC of gastric inlet patches for the treatment of globus sensation might be a sufficient therapy option. Recurrences or residual heterotopic gastric mucosa are possible and seem to be associated with a relapse of symptoms. Therefore, endoscopic follow-up and retreatment might be necessary if globus sensation is not sufficiently eliminated.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Argon Plasma Coagulation / methods*
  • Endoscopy, Digestive System / methods
  • Esophageal Diseases / surgery*
  • Esophagus / surgery*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Gastric Mucosa / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult