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: Case report  USA

[In Press] Columnar Metaplasia of the Esophagus Presenting as Iron Deficiency Anemia in Children with Neurologic Impairment or Congenital Esophageal Atresia

Challenging differential diagnosis, Educational Purpose (only if useful for a systematic review or synthesis), Rare coexistence of disease or pathology

Melissa R. Van Arsdall1ABCDEF, Supriya Nair1BDEF, Lindsay M. Moye2BDEF, Trinh T. Nguyen3BDEF, Zeina M. Saleh1DEF, J. Marc Rhoads ORCID logo1ABCDEF

Am J Case Rep In Press; DOI:   :: ID: 937255

Available online: , In Press, Corrected Proof

Publication in the "In-Press" formula aims at speeding up the public availability of the pending manuscript while waiting for the final publication. The assigned DOI number is active and citable. The availability of the article in the Medline, PubMed and PMC databases as well as Web of Science will be obtained after the final publication according to the journal schedule


Columnar metaplasia of the lower esophagus includes both gastric and intestinal metaplasia. Children with severe neurologic impairment and congenital esophageal atresia often have gastroesophageal reflux disease, which can lead to Barrett’s esophagus, a form of lower esophageal columnar metaplasia and precursor to esophageal adenocarcinoma, with some, but not all, guidelines specifically requiring the presence of intestinal metaplasia for diagnosis. This case series illustrates how iron deficiency anemia may be the primary symptom of esophageal columnar metaplasia in such children and how upper endoscopy is essential in their initial and ongoing evaluation.
We review 5 cases of columnar metaplasia of the lower esophagus in children, 3 with severe neurologic impairment and 2 with esophageal atresia. Each child presented with marked iron deficiency anemia and minimal-to-no gastrointestinal symptoms.
We conclude that columnar metaplasia of the esophagus may present with iron deficiency anemia in children with neurologic impairment or congenital esophageal atresia, even if without overt gastrointestinal symptoms. Accordingly, we propose that early endoscopic evaluation should be considered in this specific patient population. Based on our literature review, we also emphasize the need for guidelines on the endoscopic surveillance of such children with any type of columnar metaplasia of the lower esophagus, given the associated risk of malignant transformation.

Keywords: Anemia, Iron-Deficiency; Barrett Esophagus; Esophageal Atresia; Metaplasia; Neurodevelopmental Disorders; Pediatrics


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American Journal of Case Reports eISSN: 1941-5923
American Journal of Case Reports eISSN: 1941-5923