Esophageal Cancer: Screening

Approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 12/2016

ON THIS PAGE: You will find out more about screening for this type of cancer. You will also learn the risks and benefits of screening. To see other pages, use the menu.

Screening is used to look for cancer before you have any symptoms or signs. Scientists have developed, and continue to develop, tests that can be used to screen a person for specific types of cancer. The overall goals of cancer screening are to:

  • Lower the number of people who die from the disease, or eliminate deaths from cancer altogether

  • Lower the number of people who develop the disease

Learn more about the basics of cancer screening.

Screening information for esophageal cancer

Regular screening tests to find esophageal cancer in people without symptoms are not used in the United States. People with Barrett's esophagus (see above) may be advised to have regular endoscopic examinations. An endoscopic examination is a procedure that used a flexible, lighted tube to look inside the esophagus. During these examinations, biopsies can be taken to remove a small amount of tissue for examination under a microscope. This type of screening can help find cancer early or changes that could become cancerous over time. Learn more about these tests in the Diagnosis section.

The next section in this guide is Symptoms and Signs. It explains what body changes or medical problems this disease can cause. Or, use the menu to choose another section to continue reading this guide.