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Pathology of Esophageal Cysts

 Dr  Sampurna Roy  MD


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Esophageal cysts are rare benign lesions.  

Malignant transformation is an extremely rare event occurring within esophageal cysts, adenocarcinoma being the most common histology.   

Squamous carcinoma has also been reported.

- Retention cyst or mucocele - Usually located in the lower esophagus  and is lined by squamous epithelium or cuboidal cells and is probably related to post-inflammatory cystic dilatation of excretary duct of submucosal esophageal gland.

- Duplication (developmental) cysts - Esophageal duplication cysts are rare congenital anomalies lined by esophageal, bronchial or gastric type epithelium. 60% of duplication cyst is located in the lower esophagus. Foregut duplications occur as a result of abnormal canalization of the foregut during intrauterine life.

May be attached to the esophagus in a paraesophageal location or may be intramural.

- Inclusion cysts - Unilocular intramural cyst in the lower part of the esophagus, lined by squamous or columnar epithelium or ciliated columnar epithelium. 


Further reading

Intra-abdominal esophageal duplication cyst in an adult.

A case of esophageal duplication cyst with a 13-year follow-up period.

Case report: Squamous carcinoma in an oesophageal foregut cyst.

Clinicopathologic assessment of esophageal cysts--a report of 8 cases.

Isolated intra-abdominal esophageal cyst.Case report and review of the literature.


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Dr Sampurna Roy  MD

Consultant  Histopathologist (Kolkata - India)






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