Endoscopy 1995; 27(6): 433-437
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-1005736
Original Article

© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Endoscopic Incision of Zenker's Diverticula

S. Ishioka, P. Sakai, F. Maluf Filho, J. M. Melo
  • Department of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy, São Paulo Medical School, São Paolo, Brazil
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
17 March 2008 (online)


Background and Study Aims: The endoscopic treatment of symptomatic pharyngoesophageal diverticula (PED) with rigid instruments involves the incision of the septum between the diverticulum and the esophageal lumen, within which the cricopharyngeal muscle is present. The aim of this study is to report on the feasibility and efficacy of our method using flexible endoscopy and an electrosurgery system with minimal trauma to the patients.

Patients and Methods: Forty-two patients (13 female, 29 male) with symptomatic pharyngoesophageal diverticula underwent endoscopic treatment. The average age of the patients was 68.4 years (range 46 to 102 years) and 26 of them (61 %) had concomitant cardiopulmonary diseases. The procedure consisted of endoscopic incision of the septum with a needle knife, using cutting/coagulation current. It was performed under preparation for routine endoscopic examination. All patients were clinically and endoscopically evaluated at two and four weeks, and afterwards followed clinically at 12, 24, and 60 months after the procedure.

Results: The endoscopic incision was performed in one to five sessions (mean of 1.8 session per patient). Two complications (one cervical emphysema, and one hemorrhage) were managed clinically. Dysphagia disappeared in all patients soon after the treatment, although the postoperative radiological and endoscopic controls revealed the presence of a remaining diverticulum. Manometric findings disclosed a significant reduction in upper esophageal sphincter pressures in all five patients after endoscopic incision. Mean follow-up was 38 months. There was recurrence of dysphagia in three patients (7.1 %) at 12, 22, and 60 months after the procedure. They experienced relief of dysphagia after a repeated endoscopic incision.

Conclusions: Endoscopic incision of PED using flexible equipment proved to be a highly efficient and safe method of treating symptomatic disease. It should be considered as an alternative therapy for Zenker's diverticula, especially for patients at a high surgical risk.