What are the symptoms of infectious esophagitis?

Updated: May 28, 2020
  • Author: Deepika Devuni, MD; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
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Infectious esophagitis is primarily seen in patients who are immunocompromised. The most common causes of infectious esophagitis are fungal (Candida species) and viral (herpes simplex virus and cytomegalovirus [CMV]). A history of immunosuppression, steroid therapy, recent antibiotic use, or systemic illness supports the diagnosis. Although patients may be asymptomatic, typical symptoms include the following:

  • Onset of difficult or painful swallowing (ie, dysphagia, odynophagia)
  • Heartburn
  • Retrosternal discomfort or pain
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Fever, sepsis
  • Abdominal pain
  • Epigastric pain
  • Hematemesis (occasionally)
  • Anorexia, weight loss (depends on chronicity and severity of underlying illness)
  • Cough

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