Photodynamic therapy is a novel endoscopic technique that combines a photosensitizer and laser light to destroy target cells. Photodynamic therapy has been used in Europe, North Africa and Japan to treat esophageal neoplasms and dysplastic Barrett's esophagus. This paper summarizes the available published experience of photodynamic therapy for the treatment of each esophageal cancer and Barrett's esophagus. These studies suggest that photodynamic therapy is a promising modality for esophageal mucosal disease. More long-term studies, however, are needed to document the efficacy of photodynamic therapy in reducing the morbidity and mortality from esophageal cancer for patients with high-grade dysplasia and early adenocarcinoma in Barrett's esophagus.
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