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Oesophageal pH and manometry

Oesophageal pH studies are carried out to test for oesophageal reflux and determine whether reflux is related to other symptoms, such as chest pain. The test involves inserting a thin tube through the nose into the lower part of the oesophagus, with a monitor connected to a tube to measure and monitor the pH. The results are monitored by a trained physician, with a low pH reading indicating acidity, and a high reading indicating alkalinity. The test results will also show episodes of other symptoms.

Oesophageal manometry is an investigation used to test the function of the oesophageal muscle and is used to investigate the cause of reflux, detect causes for problems with swallowing and to evaluate chest pain, which may be coming from the oesophagus.

Before the procedure one nostril will be numbed using an anaesthetic lubricant and a flexible tube is then passed through the nostril and into the oesophagus when the patient swallows. The tube measures the pressure generated by the oesophageal muscle at rest and when swallowing. The procedure takes between 20 and 30 minutes.