What Are the Symptoms and Risk Factors of Esophageal Cancer?

Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of esophageal cancer include:

  • Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)
  • Weight loss without trying
  • Chest pain, pressure or burning
  • Worsening indigestion or heartburn
  • Coughing or hoarseness

Early esophageal cancer typically causes no signs or symptoms.

 

Risk factors

Factors that increase your risk of esophageal cancer include:

  • Having gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Smoking
  • Having precancerous changes in the cells of the esophagus (Barrett’s esophagus)
  • Being obese
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Having bile reflux
  • Having difficulty swallowing because of an esophageal sphincter that won’t relax (achalasia)
  • Having a steady habit of drinking very hot liquids
  • Not eating enough fruits and vegetables
  • Undergoing radiation treatment to the chest or upper abdomen
* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.