Background and study aims: Polypoid lesions found during upper gastrointestinal endoscopy (UGIE) are occasionally found in patients with portal hypertension (PH). This study aimed to assess the true nature of such polypoid lesions using endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) and determine the accuracy of UGIE in differentiating between vascular and non-vascular lesions in PH.
Patients and methods: We retrospectively assessed all patients with PH referred for EUS due to polypoid lesions of unknown nature at UGIE over a 7-year period. Cases of known varices were excluded. UGIE findings were compared to EUS findings.
Results: 66 patients were included (26 male). Commonest UGIE findings were: possible varices (19.4 %), polypoid/neoplastic lesion (52.8 %) and submucosal lesion (16.7 %). After EUS, the final diagnoses were: varices in 25 %, polypoid lesion with underlying vessel/varix in 27.8 % and non-vascular lesion or submucosal lesion in 47.2 %. The diagnostic accuracy of UGIE was suboptimal, since 28.6 % of possible varices were eventually found to be non-vascular, while 15.8 % of polyp/neoplastic looking lesions proved to be varices and 42.1 % were lesions with underlying vessel/varix. 50 % of submucosal lesions were eventually found to be varices.
Conclusion: Endoscopists should have a high index of suspicion of varices or polyps related to varices when assessing atypical looking polypoid lesions in patients with PH. In such cases EUS should be considered before obtaining biopsies.
- Journal Article