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Esophageal Manometry/

Esophageal Manometry/Motility Study is used to assess esophageal function. It can show muscle function abnormalities that may result in heartburn, chest pain, difficulty swallowing, hoarseness, coughing or nausea and vomiting. This assessment will help the physician plan treatment for your particular health issue. This study is also requested prior to hiatal hernia or anti-reflux surgery.

The Exam

Your procedure will take place in an examination room. No sedation is given for the exam. Your throat will be sprayed with a topical anesthetic and an anesthetic lubricant will be used on a small flexible tube. The tube is about half the diameter of a pencil and is gently placed into one nostril and guided into the esophagus and stomach while you are seated. Once in place, you will lie down on an examination table. You will not have to remove your clothing and you may have a companion with you.

The exam usually lasts 15 minutes; your total appointment time will be approximately 45 minutes.

During the Exam

During the exam, a baseline measurement will be taken. You will then be given ten swallows of Gatorade, one teaspoon at a time. After which, you will sit up and eat a few crackers. Following this, the probe will be removed. If you are also having a 24-hour pH study, that probe will be replaced and secured.

After the Exam

Once the examination is complete, you may drive yourself home, eat and go about your usual activities.


Esophageal manometry/motility studies are very low risk procedures. It is possible that a perforation (tear) or bleeding of the gastrointestinal tract wall could occur. Other risks include drug reactions or complications from other medical conditions you already have.

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