Endoscopy 1992; 24(4): 262-265
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-1009122
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© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Mallory-Weiss Tears Occurring during Endoscopy: A Report of Seven Cases

J. G. Penston, E. J. S. Boyd, K. G. Wormsley
  • Ninewells Hospital and Medical School, Dundee, UK
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Publication History

Publication Date:
17 March 2008 (online)


Mallory-Weiss tears occurring during the course of upper gastrointestinal endoscopy are apparently rare. The present report describes seven cases of iatrogenic gastro-oesophageal tears encountered during 10,000 endoscopic examinations over a period of six years. Five of the seven patients were female and six patients were aged 75 years or older. Six patients had hiatal hernias. The site of the mucosal tear was similar in all patients, extending from a V-shaped breach at the gastro-oesophageal junction inferiorly along the lesser curve for a variable distance of up to 8 cm. Neither retching nor struggling during the procedure contributed to the development of the lesion in any of the patients. One patient suffered from a haematemesis which required transfusion, and in a further patient the tear resulted in a haematemesis and gastric perforation necessitating laparotomy. The study indicates that Mallory-Weiss tears complicating endoscopy occur especially in elderly, female patients with hiatal hernias. The importance of admitting patients with this complication to hospital for overnight observation is recommended in view of the possible development of haemorrhage or perforation.