Barrett's esophagus is a disorder in which the lining of the esophagus (the tube that carries food from the throat to the stomach), is damaged by stomach acid. The acid leaks from the stomach upward and back into the esophagus, causing a sensation that patients often describe as heartburn that never goes away.

The exact cause of Barrett’s esophagus is unknown, but gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a risk factor for the condition, and those with Barrett’s esophagus are at increased risk for a rare type of cancer called esophageal adenocarcinoma.

Treatment

In the past, surgical treatment for Barrett's esophagus usually involved removing the entire esophagus. Now, with minimally invasive endoscopic techniques, patients have more treatment options.