New procedure offers precancerous treatment to prevent esophageal cancer
Those with Barrett's esophagus, a condition related to gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), have long been known to be at an increased risk of esophageal cancer. Now, a new endoscopic surgical procedure available at Salina Regional Health Center can eliminate precancerous tissue related to Barrett's esophagus.
With GERD, stomach acid and enzymes can enter the esophagus causing heartburn, regurgitation and chest pain. Over time this can lead to damage of the esophageal lining, which can alter tissue and make it susceptible to becoming cancerous.
The new HALO technology uses an "ablation" technique where tissue is heated until it is no longer viable or alive. In conjunction with an upper endoscopy the HALO ablation catheter is placed into the esophagus to the precise point of suspect tissue. Patients experience few side effects with the procedure and healthy, normal tissue re-grows on the esophagus lining where the ablation has taken place. Clinical studies have demonstrated that precancerous tissue can be completely eliminated with HALO ablation technology in more than 98 percent of patients.
Instead of following along and monitoring patients, a physician can actually be proactive and remove the risk of ever developing esophageal cancer.