Diagnosis and management of achalasia: Updates of the last two years

Amir Mari, Fadi Abu Baker, Rinaldo Pellicano, Tawfik Khoury

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Achalasia is a rare neurodegenerative disorder causing dysphagia and is characterized by abnormal esophageal motor function as well as the loss of lower esophageal sphincter (LES) relaxation. The assessment and management of achalasia has significantly progressed in recent years due to the advances in high-resolution manometry (HRM) technology along with the improvements and innovations of therapeutic endoscopy procedures. The recent evolution of HRM technology with the inclusion of an adjunctive test, fluoroscopy, and EndoFLIP has enabled more precise diagnoses of achalasia to be made and the subgrouping into therapeutically meaningful subtypes. Current management possibilities include endoscopic treatments such as Botulinum toxin injected to the LES and pneumatic balloon dilation. Surgical treatment includes laparoscopic Heller myotomy and esophagectomy. Furthermore, in recent years, per oral endoscopic myotomy (POEM) has established itself as a principal endoscopic therapeutic alternative to the traditional laparoscopic Heller myotomy. The latest randomized trials report that POEM, pneumatic balloon dilatation, and laparoscopic Heller’s myotomy have comparable effectiveness and complications rates. The aim of the current review is to provide a practical clinical approach to dysphagia and to shed light on the most recent improvements in diagnostics and treatment of achalasia over the last two years.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3607
JournalJournal of Clinical Medicine
Issue number16
StatePublished - 16 Aug 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • Achalasia
  • Diagnosis
  • Dysphagia
  • High resolution manometry (HRM)
  • Management
  • Per oral endoscopic myotomy (POEM)


Dive into the research topics of 'Diagnosis and management of achalasia: Updates of the last two years'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this