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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Esophageal Atresia
      Category : Health Centers > Digestive System

Esophageal Atresia

Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

Esophageal atresia is a condition in which the esophagus is not fully developed. It is a congenital condition, which means that it is present at birth.

What is going on in the body?

Esophageal atresia is a condition in which the upper esophagus is closed off, forming a pouch at the end of it. This prevents fluid from entering into the stomach. The fluid builds up in the pouch and backs up into the mouth.

This condition is often associated with a tracheoesophageal fistula, an abnormality in which the lower esophagus connects to the trachea. The trachea is the tube that allows air to flow between the lungs and mouth.

A baby with esophageal atresia often has other medical problems, such as heart, kidney, or gastrointestinal conditions.

What are the causes and risks of the disease?

Esophageal atresia occurs when the esophagus and trachea fail to separate normally while the embryo is in the uterus. The actual cause of this condition is not known. It is more common in babies with chromosomal abnormalities, such as Down syndrome.


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Esophageal Atresia: Symptoms & Signs

Author: Eileen McLaughlin, RN, BSN
Reviewer: Gail Hendrickson, RN, BS
Date Reviewed: 07/27/01

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