• esophageal motility disorder;
  • manometry;
  • scleroderma;
  • systemic


Systemic sclerosis (SSc) is a multisystem disease of unknown etiology. Esophageal involvement affects 50–90% of patients and is characterized by abnormal motility and hypotonic lower esophageal sphincter. Data on the association of esophageal abnormalities and age, gender, SSc subset or duration, autoantibody profile, esophageal symptoms, and medication are lacking or conflicting. The aim of this study was the evaluation of these associations in Brazilian sclerodermic patients from the Rheumatology Division, Clinics Hospital, Federal University, Minas Gerais. They underwent medical records review, clinical interview, and esophageal manometry. The normal cutoff level for lower esophageal sphincter pressure was 14 mmHg. Abnormal peristalsis occurred when less than 80% of peristaltic waves were propagated. P-values less than 0.05 were considered significant. Twenty-eight patients were included: 71% were women. The population presented medium age and disease duration of 46 years and 12 years, respectively. Cutaneous diffuse SSc occurred in 39% and its limited form in 61%. Dysphagia, pyrosis, and regurgitation occurred, respectively, in 71%, 43%, and 61% of patients. Lower esophageal sphincter pressure and number of peristaltic waves-propagated medias were, respectively, 17.2 mmHg and 2.3. SSc-related manometric abnormalities were present in 86% of patients. Manometry revealed distal esophageal body hypomotility, hypotonic lower esophageal sphincter, or both, respectively, in 82%, 39%, and 36% of patients. One patient presented the manometric pattern of esophageal achalasia. Male patients more frequently presented hypotonic inferior esophageal sphincter. Manometric findings have had no relationship with the other variables. Nifedipine use did not influence manometric findings.