Subepithelial esophageal tumors: a single-center review of resected and surveilled lesions

Don C. Codipilly, Hongfei Fang, Jeffrey A. Alexander, David A. Katzka, Karthik Ravi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Background and Aims: Subepithelial esophageal tumors (SETs) are frequent incidental findings. Although symptomatic tumors are surgically or endoscopically resected, there is no consensus on the management of asymptomatic esophageal leiomyomas. Methods: Appropriate International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision codes followed by medical record review were used to identify patients with SETs from January 1992 to March 2017, with abstraction of basic demographics, surveillance intervals, and mortality. Patients were contacted to complete a phone questionnaire to assess follow-up as well as the validated Brief Esophageal Dysphagia Questionnaire (BEDQ). Results: Eighty-four leiomyomas, 5 leiomyosarcomas, 13 GI stromal tumors (GISTs), and 4 granular cell tumors were found. Among patients with leiomyomas, 58 (69%) were resected and 26 (31%) were followed under surveillance. Resected esophageal leiomyomas were larger than those under surveillance (49.7 mm vs 17.9 mm, P <.003). Esophageal leiomyoma growth during surveillance was only.5 mm over a mean 70-month follow-up (range, 4-288). No malignant transformation was seen, and only 2 patients required subsequent resection. The phone survey was completed by 35 patients and revealed minimal symptom burden, with only 2 patients (15%) under esophageal leiomyoma surveillance reporting symptoms (BEDQ score ≥10) over a mean 96.7-month follow-up. EUS had high diagnostic accuracy with a positive predictive value of 68% and a negative predictive value of 100% for leiomyomas or GISTs compared with surgical pathology. Conclusions: EUS demonstrated high diagnostic accuracy in resected SETs. Esophageal leiomyomas demonstrate minimal growth or symptomatic progression. Therefore, long-term EUS surveillance of small asymptomatic esophageal leiomyomas may be unnecessary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)370-377
Number of pages8
JournalGastrointestinal endoscopy
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Gastroenterology


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