Digestive Care

Esophageal Manometry

Esophageal manometry is a test that measures pressure within the esophagus. It also determines the effectiveness of the contractibility of the esophagus. Esophageal manometry is helpful is determining the reason for the patient's difficulty in swallowing, heartburn or chest pain.

Preparation Before the Procedure
Day of the Procedure
Benefits
Alternatives
Side Effects and Complications

Preparation Before the Procedure
No food or drink eight hours prior to the exam. If you take prescription or over-the-counter drugs, ask your physician several days before the test what drugs you can or cannot take before the exam.  [Back to the top]

Day of the Procedure
The procedure time is approximately a half hour. A topical anesthetic agent is put in the back of the throat to decrease the gag reflex. While the patient is lying on his side, a soft thin tube is put in the nose or mouth into the esophagus. Measurements are taken while the patient swallows water. Once pressures are measured, the tube is withdrawn and the patient is discharged.  [Back to the top]

Benefits
The exam gives your physician documentation on how your esophagus is functioning. Results of the exam will determine the appropriate treatment.

Alternatives to Manometry
No other test takes the place of the manometry. [Back to the top]

Side Effects and Complication
No serious problems are associated with esophageal manometry. You may experience some slight, temporary gagging during tube placement and a slight sore throat after the exam.  [Back to the top]