Mucosal Eosinophilia: Prevalence and Racial/Ethnic Differences in Symptoms and Endoscopic Findings in Adults Over 10 Years in an Urban Hospital

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Eosinophilic esophagitis is a chronic inflammatory disease with mucosal accumulation of eosinophils. There is a paucity of data among racial/ethnic groups other than white patients.


To determine if racial/ethnic differences exist in clinical presentation, endoscopic appearance, and biopsy results in adult patients (age ≥18 y) with mucosal eosinophilia and examine the prevalence of mucosal eosinophilia at an urban hospital over a 10-year period.


Pathology reports searched at Temple University Hospital 2000 to 2009; key words: “eosinophils”, “esophagus”, and “biopsy”. Clinical and endoscopic records reviewed on patients with ≥15 eosinophils/high power field.


A total of 64 adults (average age, 41 y; 62% male patients; 81% white, 12% black, and 6% Hispanic). White patients were significantly younger (P=0.03). Adult mucosal eosinophilia diagnosis increased by 833% (3 in 2000 to 25 in 2009); black/Hispanic diagnosis increased by 500% (1 in 2000 to 5 in 2009). Solid food dysphagia was more common among white patients (72% vs. 0.33%, P=0.02). Reflux symptoms were more common in black/Hispanic patients (42% vs. 22%, P=0.16). Normal endoscopy (42% vs. 13%, P=0.04) and reflux changes (41% vs. 21%, P=0.16) were more common in black/Hispanic patients. Furrows (42% vs. 8%, P=0.04) and rings (46% vs. 0%, P=0.002) were more common in white patients. Average eosinophil counts did not vary between groups.


Mucosal eosinophilia presents with significant differences between racial/ethnic groups in age at onset, symptoms at presentation, and endoscopic features. Differences may reflect different phenotypes of the same disease or separate disease entities.

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