April is Esophageal Cancer Awareness Month

Esophageal Cancer Awareness MonthIncreasing public understanding and the risk factors of this dangerous disease

Walnut Creek, CA, April 10, 2018:  April is esophageal cancer awareness month, helping to draw attention to a particularly deadly and rapidly growing form of cancer. Esophageal cancer is cancer that forms in the esophagus, the approximate 10-inch long tube that passes food from the mouth to the stomach. There are 2 types of cancer associated with the esophagus:

  1. Squamous cell carcinoma: this form of cancer begins with the flat cells that line the surface of the esophagus with the most common causes being smoking, drinking alcohol or hot drinks and a poor diet (i.e. eating few fruits and vegetables).
  2. Adenocarcinoma: this form of cancer begins with the mucus secreting cells, typically in the lower portion of the esophagus with the most common causes being smoking, obesity and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

Adenocarcinoma is significantly more prevalent in the United States and has a high mortality rate, which some believe to be attributable to the often late stage diagnosis of the disease. The National Institute of Health[1] estimates new cases in 2017 where 16,940 with 15,690 deaths and an 18.8% 5-year survivability rate.

According to Wilson Tsai, Founder and Director of the Heartburn Center of California, “The key to fighting and beating this cancer, like all cancers, is to recognize and address the risk factors as well as early detection.” He continues by stating that, “if you experience heartburn or reflux for 5 years, you should see a specialist for a complete workup that can determine the cause of the reflux and address it.”

According to the American Cancer Society[2], “Not all esophageal cancers can be prevented, but the risk of developing this disease can be greatly reduced by…

  • Avoiding tobacco and alcohol
  • Watching your diet and body weight
  • Getting treated for reflux or Barrett’s esophagus



Heartburn Center of California

The Heartburn Center of California was established to provide specialized and focused care to patients suffering from esophageal and digestive disorders resulting in what is commonly known as heartburn. The Center is dedicated to providing very specialized medical professionals with in depth knowledge and focused technics in diagnosing and treating ailments that result in Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), also referred to as heartburn.

The holistic and methodical approach to diagnosis and treatment by the Center contribute to a high success rate in identifying and addressing the root cause of the heartburn as opposed to just treating the symptoms of this increasingly common ailment.

According to the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP), “Up to 60 percent of the population at some time during the year, and 20 to 30 percent weekly, experience symptoms of [GERD], such as heartburn and acid regurgitation.”[3] With such a high prevalence and few organizations focused specifically on accurately diagnosing and treating the disease, the healthcare professionals at the Heartburn Center of California are unique in their dedication and focus on esophageal and digestive disorders in particular as they pertain to GERD or heartburn.



[1] https://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/esoph.html

[2] https://www.cancer.org/cancer/esophagus-cancer/causes-risks-prevention/prevention.html

[3] Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project’s (HCUP) “Statistical Brief #44”