It’s important to know your body, to be aware of any signs, symptoms, or changes and to understand when it’s time to see a physician and get checked out.
There are a few common symptoms that you may be ignoring, that if left alone may lead to harmful conditions, even cancer. One is chronic heartburn.
Most people don’t associate chronic heartburn with esophageal cancer, and yet, if it goes unchecked, chronic heartburn, which is a symptom of acid reflux, can lead to a condition known as Barrett's esophagus, a precancerous condition of the esophagus.
In Barrett's esophagus, normal tissue lining the esophagus - the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach --changes to tissue that resembles the lining of the intestine. About 10% of people with chronic symptoms of GERD develop Barrett's esophagus.
Barrett's esophagus does not have any specific symptoms, although patients with Barrett's esophagus may have symptoms related to GERD. It does, though, increase the risk of developing esophageal adenocarcinoma, which is a serious, potentially fatal cancer of the esophagus.
The good news is that due to recent medical advances in detection and treatment, gastroenterologists can now better help ensure that if any unhealthy cells are present, they will be found and then treated in time to prevent their progression to Esophageal Adenocarcinoma — one of the fastest growing cancers in America.
CDx technology is helping change the landscape of preventative medicine. One of the next generation AI-powered diagnostic tests, WATS3D, is helping doctors go beyond traditional screening of the esophagus to more reliably detect early warning signs than conventional methods alone in order to help better protect you.