Outcomes of endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD) plus radiofrequency ablation (RFA) for nodular Barrett's esophagus

Scand J Gastroenterol. 2023 Feb;58(2):123-132. doi: 10.1080/00365521.2022.2111226. Epub 2022 Aug 14.


Background: Although Endoscopic Submucosal Dissection (ESD) was proven superior to Endoscopic Mucosal Resection (EMR) in achieving higher complete remission rates for neoplastic Barrett's Esophagus (BE), its safety with Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) remains unstudied. We share our experience with ESD + RFA for nodular BE eradication.

Methods: A retrospective study of all patients ≥18-years with nodular BE who underwent ESD + RFA between September 2015 and December 2020 at our tertiary center. Patients with advanced adenocarcinoma requiring esophagectomy were excluded. Primary outcomes included adverse events (AE) rates and complete eradication rates for adenocarcinoma (CE-EAC), dysplasia (CE-D), and intestinal metaplasia (CE-IM). Secondary outcomes included local recurrence rates following eradication.

Results: Eighteen patients were included with a total of 22 ESDs performed and a median of 2 RFA sessions-per-patient [IQR: 1.25, 3]. Sixteen patients were males and/or white (88.9%) with a median BMI of 29.75 kg/m2 [IQR: 26.9, 31.5]. Fourteen patients had long-segment BE (77.7%) while 16 had hiatal hernias (88.9%). Median resection size was 12.1 cm2 [IQR: 5.6, 20.2]. AEs included one intraprocedural micro-perforation (4.5%) and 4 strictures (22.2%), only one of which developed post-RFA. All AEs were successfully treated endoscopically. Over a median of 42.5 months [IQR: 28, 59.25], CE-EAC was achieved in 13 patients (100%), CE-D in 15 patients (100%), and CE-IM in 14 patients (77.8%). Following eradication, 2 patients had recurrent dysplasia (2/15, 13.3%) and one had recurrent intestinal metaplasia (1/14, 7.1%).

Conclusion: In high-risk patients with long-segment neoplastic BE requiring extensive endoscopic resection, ESD + RFA offers excellent complete eradication rates with rare additional adverse events by RFA. Standard endoscopic surveillance following eradication remains important.

Keywords: Nodular Barrett’s Esophagus; endoscopic eradication therapy; endoscopic submucosal dissection; esophageal adenocarcinoma; radiofrequency ablation.

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma* / pathology
  • Barrett Esophagus* / pathology
  • Catheter Ablation* / adverse effects
  • Endoscopic Mucosal Resection* / adverse effects
  • Esophageal Neoplasms* / pathology
  • Esophagoscopy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metaplasia
  • Radiofrequency Ablation*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome