Schatzki’s Ring is a narrowing of the esophagus, the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach. It is a thin fibrous ring of tissue at the lower end of the esophagus that partially obstructs the esophagus just before it empties into the stomach.
The patient will typically complain of long-standing, intermittent difficulty swallowing large pieces of food such as chicken, beef, or bread. The food will lodge in the lower esophagus but eventually pass into the stomach.
The diagnosis is made by barium x-ray studies or by passing a flexible tube through the mouth into the esophagus to directly visualize the lining of the esophagus (endoscopy).
The symptoms caused by a Schatzki’s Ring will typically respond to stretching or dilatation of the ring during endoscopy.