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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


Esophageal Mucosal Calcinosis: A Rare Site of Gastrointestinal Mucosal Calcinosis

Rare co-existance of disease or pathology

Aaron R. Huber, Brandon S. Sprung, John Miller Jr., Jennifer J. Findeis-Hosey

USA Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, NY, USA

Am J Case Rep 2018; 19:406-409

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.908255

Available online: 2018-04-06

Published: 2018-04-06


BACKGROUND: Gastrointestinal tract mucosal calcinosis (MC) tends to affect the gastric mucosa, while esophageal involvement is rare. Gastric MC may be seen with solid organ transplantation, use of aluminum-containing antacids or sucralfate, malignancy, and chronic renal failure. While the incidence of gastric MC in renal transplant patients undergoing gastric biopsy is common (between 15–29%), to our knowledge esophageal MC has only been previously reported 3 times.
CASE REPORT: A 68-year-old male dialysis-dependent end stage renal disease status-post deceased donor kidney transplant underwent an esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) for dysphagia and diffuse esophageal wall thickening seen on imaging studies. EGD demonstrated diffuse, circumferential thick white esophageal plaques and mucosal friability. Esophageal biopsies demonstrated erosive esophagitis with basophilic calcium deposits within the fibrinopurulent exudate and squamous mucosa. Stains for fungal organisms and viruses were negative. A diagnosis of esophageal MC was made. Although the patient had a protracted postoperative course after transplantation, he had improvement of the esophageal wall thickening on imaging after transplantation.
CONCLUSIONS: Esophageal MC is a rare phenomenon and all of the previously reported cases of esophageal MC, including our case, have been in patients with end stage renal disease who were on dialysis. Although prolonged hypercalcemia and hyperphosphatemia, an elevated calcium-phosphorus product, and associated underlying inflammation are likely key etiologic factors, the pathogenesis of esophageal MC is not fully understood and is likely due to multiple collective etiologies. Likewise, more reported cases are likely to increase our understanding of the clinical significance and management of this rare disorder.

Keywords: Calcinosis, calciphylaxis, Esophageal Diseases