|Classification and external resources|
Plummer–Vinson syndrome (PVS), also called Paterson–Brown–Kelly syndrome or sideropenic dysphagia, presents as a triad of postcricoid dysphagia from esophageal webs, iron deficiency anemia, and a beefy-red tongue due to atrophic glossitis. It most usually occurs in postmenopausal women.
PVS sufferers often complain of a burning sensation with the tongue and oral mucosa, and atrophy of lingual papillae produces a smooth, shiny, red dorsum of the tongue.
- Dysphagia (difficulty in swallowing)
- Odynophagia (Painful swallowing, also called Algiaphagia)
- Atrophic glossitis
- Angular stomatitis
- increased risk of carcinoma
Serial contrasted gastrointestinal radiography or upper gastrointestinal endoscopy may reveal the web in the esophagus. Blood tests show a hypochromic microcytic anemia that is consistent with an iron-deficiency anemia. Biopsy of involved mucosa typically reveals epithelial atrophy (shrinking) and varying amounts of submucosal chronic inflammation. Epithelial atypia or dysplasia may be present.
Causes and associated conditions
The cause of PVS is unknown; however, genetic factors and nutritional deficiencies may play a role. It is more common in women, particularly in middle age (peak age is over 50). In these patients, esophageal squamous cell carcinoma risk is increased; therefore, it is considered a premalignant process.
There is risk of perforation of the esophagus with the use of dilators for treatment. Furthermore it is one of the risk factors for developing squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity, esophagus, and hypopharynx.
Good nutrition with adequate intake of iron may prevent this disorder.
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