Endoscopic mucosal resection is an invaluable tool to diagnose and potentially treat superficial cancers in Barrett's esophagus as well as squamous cell cancers. The technique can be performed using equipment available in most endoscopic laboratories. The tissue retrieved from these procedures gives the endoscopist histologic information regarding tumor depth of penetration, which is critical to treatment of early cancers. In addition, standard pinch biopsies are often unable to diagnose malignancies that may underlie areas of dysplasia or even normal mucosa. Endoscopic mucosal resection can be used to diagnose these lesions with relative safety, particularly when applied to the esophagus.
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