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Does esophageal stricture correlate to intestinal stricture?

I'm dx with crohn's. The diagnosis came 5 years after a diagnosis of lichen planus in my esophagus.

Short version, I have regular dilations to keep my esophagus open. It's mostly scar tissue, which of course isn't very mobile -the only way to open it is to tear it- so at this point we're trying to maintain the diameter we've achieved.

My primary troubles with the crohn's is fatigue and chronic anemia. I just had iron infusions a month ago, so the fatigue is getting a little better.

I have been fortunate so far to have avoided any surgeries or serious complications. I was kind of hoping it was going to stay that way.
But I've been having abdominal pain and going between D and C, etc. I sent the doc a message and he decided to send me for an MRI.

In the meantime, eating causes pain. I'm always in pain (aren't we all), so I don't even really notice it unless it hits the 5-6 level on my pain schedule.

Does anyone have any experience with esophageal stricture? and does that seem to correspond to a higher risk for GI stricture?
Any ideas on liquid diets? I'll look it up, of course. But if anyone has prior experience I'd be interested to know what worked, what didn't, etc.

What does an intestinal stricture feel like? I think I had it in my head that if things are moving at all, that there's no stricture/obstruction. Like, if something makes it through, there's no need to worry?

I'm on remicade, about my 4th year of it. It seems to keep my blood levels pretty normal. But blood tests aren't always definitive for me. In 2017 my inflammation levels were perfectly normal and I lost 40 lbs in 3 months with no dietary or activity changes. (shrug)

I really like the state of denial. But I'm the primary wage earner in the home and I don't want to let my family down because I'm stubborn. TIA
 

Trysha

Moderator
Staff member
I have colon and esophageal strictures...which did occur at the same time and were treated by the GI.last year
This year the colon stricture was treated with balloon endoscopy ..it had reached a diameter of 1-2 mmms and was stretched to 15mm.
The esophageal stricture has not (yet) returned.
The colon was still active but stools sizes varied some very thin others small pieces so it did not seize up altogether
I did have a lot of night time pain as well as daytime but the day pain does not seem so bad .
I have very little appetite but when things were bad with profuse liquid stools just had liquid or BRAT diet.
Currently i am moving back to a regular diet.
I have received great results with acupuncture and physiotherapy..worth every penny....the very first time he stopped the profuse diarrhea with the first treatment.....it did return a week later so same acupuncture stopped it again and at the moment it has not returned.
Sometimes needs a few treatments
The physiotherapist/acupuncturist received his training and qualifications in Hong Kong and then again in Canada.
where he is on faculty and teaches both.
Have to be very selective in going this route...they are not all equal in my experience.
I remain with the conventional GI also who is great and approves of the acupuncture.
 
Thank you for the response!

This year the colon stricture was treated with balloon endoscopy ..it had reached a diameter of 1-2 mmms and was stretched to 15mm.
OUCH! That sounds horrible. I've had my esophagus stretched in phases. They went from 11 to 18mm once and that was horribly painful. I felt like I had knives in my throat.

I have received great results with acupuncture and physiotherapy..worth every penny....the very first time he stopped the profuse diarrhea with the first treatment.....it did return a week later so same acupuncture stopped it again and at the moment it has not returned.
Sometimes needs a few treatments
The physiotherapist/acupuncturist received his training and qualifications in Hong Kong and then again in Canada.
where he is on faculty and teaches both.
Have to be very selective in going this route...they are not all equal in my experience.
I remain with the conventional GI also who is great and approves of the acupuncture.

I've never had acupuncture. I've never seen a chiropractor, either. I hate needles, not as bad as I used to be with all the poking and prodding, but I worry that the stress caused by anxiety might negate any benefits. I'll think on that some more.

I have no appetite. But I'm also getting really tired. I expect that will stop when I adjust to the clear liquid diet. I hope so. I get very annoyed that this body doesn't do what I want it to.
 

Trysha

Moderator
Staff member
The acupuncture needles are painless...and i have up to twenty + inserted at each session.
I dont look while they are going in and in no time the physiotherapist/acupuncturist is finished.
He frequently checks back ,asks questions sometimes adjust or twirl a particular needle depending on how i feel
or not.
Needles are not my favourite pastime either but this is painless as it gets.
The physiotherapy session follows the acupuncture.
 
Esophageal and intestinal strictures may or may not be related. Strictures in the esophagus can be caused both by the Crohn's and/or acid reflux/heartburn, But intestinal strictures are usually linked to IBD. I have strictures in both places, but in my case the esophageal stricture predates my Crohn's symptoms by about 10 years and is thought to be heartburn related rather than Crohn's.
 

my little penguin

Moderator
Staff member
Strictures of the esophagus can also be from eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE).
Eating offending food causes the eosinophils to rise which results in furrows and strictures
Amino acid based formula heals these(sometimes )
When Eoe is the cause and no solid food Is eaten.

They used to only find eoe in kids. And didn’t bother to look in adults
Now they know adults can get it as well



Ds drinks 50% of his calories by mouth from Neocate jr which is an amino acid based formula
Which helps his crohns
 
I should have mentioned. The esophageal strictures have been diagnosed as lichen planus. Less common than EoE. I don't have it anywhere but in my esophagus.

I had the MRI this morning. It went ok, but I won't hear anything until maybe next week.

Eating seems to exacerbate the problem. I've been eating a couple of pieces of toast per day and drinking lots of water.

I had to drink 2 bottles of contrast. I think it might be hitting me funny because my right middle back just started hurting. So off to drink more water, I guess.
 
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I was feeling pretty dumb yesterday.

I tend to assume that if X, Y, or Z hasn't happened, that it WON'T happen. So I take all my meds, etc.. but I don't pay much attention to what I eat. I don't think diet alone does the trick for me, but I could make better choices overall. If I have to, i guess.

Knowing that strictures are a possibility with IBD, I should pay more attention and be proactive where I can. I can't prevent time or unexpected events. But I don't have to put my head in the sand, either.
 
So, following up on this. The MRI revealed a "mild soft tissue thickening at the IC valve".

Doc wants to go spelunking in my colon again to determine what it is. So. EGD and colonoscopy coming up in a couple of weeks.
 
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