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The esophagus is the tube that carries food from your mouth to your stomach. An esophageal spasm is an irregular, painful tightening of the muscles along the esophagus. Normally, the esophagus tightens in a coordinated manner to move food along and into the stomach. An esophageal spasm can prevent food from reaching the stomach, leaving it stuck in the esophagus.
The cause of esophageal spasm is not known, although it is more common in people who have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). In some people, very hot or very cold foods can trigger a spasm.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of: February 10, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine & Peter J. Kahrilas MD - Gastroenterology
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.
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