Treatments

Esophageal Scleroderma Treatments

There is no cure for esophageal or other types of scleroderma, but your physician can provide relief with certain treatments, including:

  • Medications: Over-the-counter and prescription medication can control stomach acid production. Other medications promote better muscle activity in the esophagus. 
  • Pneumatic (balloon) dilation: Using an endoscope, a special balloon is passed through the mouth and into the esophagus, where it is inflated to stretch the restrictive muscles.
  • Dietary changes: 
    • Eat slowly and chew thoroughly
    • Eat soft or blended foods
    • Avoid foods that stick in the throat
    • Avoid alcohol and foods that cause gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD),  including greasy and fatty foods, spicy foods, chocolate, tobacco and caffeine 
  • Lifestyle changes: 
    • Stay upright after meals
    • Raise the head of your bed
    • Lose weight to reduce pressure on your abdomen
    • Avoid tight-fitting clothing

Related Resources

Scleroderma Foundation*
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