Background & aims: Early detection and treatment of esophageal cancer in Barrett's esophagus may improve patient survival if dysplasia is effectively detected at endoscopy. Typically, four-quadrant pinch biopsy specimens are taken at 2-cm intervals. This study was conducted to determine whether laser-induced fluorescence spectroscopy could be used to detect high-grade dysplasia in patients with Barrett's esophagus.
Methods: Four hundred ten-naonometer laser light was used to induce autofluorescence of Barrett's mucosa in 36 patients. The spectra were analyzed using the differential normalized fluorescence (DNF) index technique to differentiate high-grade dysplasia from either low-grade or nondysplastic mucosa. Each spectrum was classified as either premalignant or benign using two different DNF indices.
Results: Analysis of the fluorescence spectra from all patients collectively using the DNF intensity at 480 nm (DNF480) index showed that 96% of nondysplastic Barrett's esophagus samples were classified as benign, all low-grade dysplasia samples as benign, 90% of high-grade dysplasia samples as premalignant, and 28% of low-grade with focal high-grade dysplasia samples as premalignant. Using the two DNF indices concurrently, all patients with any high-grade dysplasia were classified correctly.
Conclusions: Laser-induced fluorescence spectroscopy has great potential to detect high-grade dysplasia in Barrett's esophagus when using the DNF technique.