What are the Symptoms of Esophageal Candidiasis?

Esophageal candidiasis, also known as esophageal thrush, is an infection of the esophagus caused by the Candida fungus. Common symptoms of esophageal candidiasis may include:

  • Painful swallowing (odynophagia): This is often a hallmark symptom, and swallowing may be particularly painful when eating or drinking.
  • Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia): Due to the pain and inflammation in the esophagus, it can become challenging to swallow food and liquids.
  • Retrosternal chest pain: A burning or discomforting sensation behind the breastbone may occur.
  • Heartburn (acid reflux): Esophageal candidiasis can lead to increased acid reflux symptoms.
  • White or yellowish plaques or lesions: These may be visible on the lining of the esophagus when examined during an endoscopy.
  • Nausea and vomiting: Some individuals with esophageal candidiasis may experience these symptoms.

It’s important to note that esophageal candidiasis typically occurs in individuals with weakened immune systems, such as those with HIV/AIDS, undergoing chemotherapy, or taking immunosuppressive medications. If you suspect you have esophageal candidiasis or have symptoms like painful swallowing, it’s essential to consult a healthcare professional for diagnosis and appropriate antifungal treatment. Left untreated, esophageal candidiasis can lead to complications and further discomfort.