Nonneoplastic disorders
Secondary achalasia (pseudoachalasia)

Author: Elliot Weisenberg, M.D. (see Authors page)

Revised: 16 January 2018, last major update December 2012

Copyright: (c) 2003-2018,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Secondary achalasia[TI] OR pseudoachalasia[TI] esophagus

Cite this page: Weisenberg, E. Secondary achalasia (pseudoachalasia). website. Accessed October 22nd, 2018.
Definition / general
  • 2 - 4% of patients with achalasia-like syndrome
  • Difficult to diagnosis
  • Resembles achalasia but has different pathology
  • Usually associated with a neoplasm, often adenocarcinoma at / near the esophagogastric junction invading into myenteric plexus (Am J Surg Pathol 2002;26:784, Scand J Gastroenterol 2005;40:378)
  • May be due to Chagas disease
  • Rarely due to a paraneoplastic process (Dis Esophagus 2007;20:168), documented by antineuronal antibodies
  • Reversal of achalasia-like symptoms after treatment of underlying disorder in most cases; reports of successful treatment of secondary achalasis from Chagas disease with botulinum toxin (Dis Esoph 2003;16:33)
Case reports
Clinical images

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Close up

Microscopic (histologic) images

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Squamous cell carcinoma