Short-term Quality-of-Life Outcomes following Transoral Diverticulotomy for Zenker’s Diverticulum: A Prospective Single-Group Study

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To prospectively analyze quality-of-life outcomes following transoral diverticulotomy with cricopharyngeal myotomy (DCPM) for Zenker’s diverticulum (ZD).

Study Design

Prospective single-group study.


Tertiary academic institution.

Subjects and Methods

A prospective multicenter study performed from January 1, 2012, to July 1, 2014, included 18 patients presenting with ZD undergoing DCPM. Standardized questionnaires—including the 10-item Eating Assessment Tool (EAT-10), Functional Outcome of Swallowing Scale (FOSS), and the Reflux Symptom Index (RSI)—were completed preoperatively and at 3 and 6 months postoperatively. Videofluoroscopic studies were obtained and analyzed by our senior speech-language pathologist, who was blinded to the clinical outcomes.


Eighteen patients were included (11 women; mean age, 72.6 years; range, 53-86 years). All patients had ZD on preoperative videofluoroscopic swallowing studies. The most common comorbidities included hypertension (10 of 18, 55.6%), dyslipidemia (8 of 18, 44.4%), hiatal hernia (6 of 18, 33.3%), and gastroesophageal reflux disease (5 of 18, 27.8%). Median preoperative RSI was 27 (interquartile range [IQR], 22.5-31.5); FOSS, 2 (IQR, 2-3); and EAT-10, 21.5 (IQR, 13.5-27.5). The 3-month questionnaire (88.9% completion) demonstrated an improved median RSI of 5 (IQR, 1-7.5; P < .001), FOSS of 0 (IQR, 0; P < .001), and EAT-10 of 0 (IQR, 0-3; P < .001). Fourteen patients (77.8%) completed the 6-month questionnaire, demonstrating a median RSI of 4 (IQR, 0-8), FOSS of 0 (IQR, 0-0.5), and EAT-10 of 1 (IQR, 0-3). While regurgitation decreased following surgery (P = .007), nighttime cough did not (P = .25).


This study supports an improvement in functional outcome and quality of life in patients with ZD undergoing DCPM.

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