Intestinal Metaplasia of the Esophagus or Esophagogastric Junction: Evidence of Distinct Clinical, Pathologic, and Histochemical Staining Features

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Our purpose was to evaluate the clinical, histologic, and histochemical staining characteristics of intestinal metaplasia (IM) at an endoscopically normal-appearing esophagogastric junction (IM-EGJ) compared with IM in a columnar-lined esophagus (IM-CLE). A prospective study included 253 patients referred for elective upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. Biopsy specimens were obtained from 2 cm above and immediately distal to the squamocolumnar junction, the gastric corpus, and the antrum. Any red mucosa above the EGJ was sampled.IM-CLE (prevalence, 5.5%) typically occurred in white male smokers with a long history of reflux symptoms. IM-EGJ (prevalence, 9.1%) was associated with corpus and antrum gastritis and with IM at these sites. IM-CLE usually (13/14 [93%]) was the incomplete type IM, whereas only 12 (52%) of 23 patients in the IM-EGJ group had incomplete IM.IM-EGJ and IM-CLE should be considered as separate entities. Further research is needed to evaluate whether neoplastic progression of IM-EGJ is related to its mucin profile.

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