Sponge Cytology “Moderately Successful” at Guiding Food Reintroduction in EoE

ByLois C

Jun 29, 2022 , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The details recommend the noninvasive method was productive in guiding foodstuff reintroduction, but missed some foods triggers in selected people.

A new report indicates the use of a noninvasive esophageal sponge machine can be successful in guiding dietary treatment amid people with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE).

Even so, the authors included there was some variance amongst their sponge success and biopsy results, suggesting a require for further analyze. The report was posted Medical Gastroenterology & Hepatology.

For some people EoE, a foodstuff antigen–mediated serious inflammatory illness, pharmacologic treatment is made use of to control the sickness. Having said that, the authors mentioned most individuals (about 70%) will answer to a meals elimination diet known as the 6 Foodstuff Elimination Diet program (SFED). The diet regime calls for the elimination of frequent allergy-associated food items like dairy, wheat, soy, and eggs. If indicators strengthen, clients then re-introduce the foods independently to see which meals set off symptom return.

The challenge, the authors stated, is that tracking EoE action typically calls for numerous endoscopies, which is both equally invasive and expensive. Therefore, the investigators sought to appraise a new instrument, an esophageal sponge-on-a-string unit (Cytosponge) that can be used in an outpatient location without having sedation. Former exploration has proposed the strategy can realize higher than 80% precision in evaluating EoE histologic exercise in comparison with endoscopy and biopsy, the authors claimed.

To assess the method as a tool to direct food plan-elimination therapy, the investigators recruited 22 individuals who responded to the SFED. The individuals underwent food reintroduction adopted by esophageal sponge cytology. Foodstuff had been categorised as “triggers” if sponge cytology exposed an eosinophil rely greater than 15 eosinophil cells for every high-powered industry (eos/hpf). Patients have been also assessed working with the EoE symptom action index (EEsAI), endoscopic reference scores (EREFS), and biopsy histology prior to nutritional therapy, right after dietary treatment, and 4 months subsequent meals reintroduction, to see irrespective of whether the success matched the anticipations dependent on sponge-directed remedy.

The investigators observed that both equally the EEsAI scores and the endoscopic scores had been identical at the postdietary therapy timepoint and next meals reintroduction. On the other hand, biopsy histology confirmed peak eosinophil counts had been better article food items reintroduction compared with publish nutritional remedy: 20. (range, 5.-51.5) vs 2. (vary, 1.-4. P < .001). The authors said this suggests some food triggers were missed. At the same time, they said peak eosinophil count was still lower post food reintroduction vs before dietary therapy was started, suggesting a benefit.

“At the post food reintroduction evaluation, sponge cytology and biopsy histology were in agreement in 59% of cases, using a cut off of < 15 eos/hpf, and 68% of cases, using a cut off of < 6 eos/hpf,” they wrote.

The authors said the sponge method led to a significant reduction in mucosal eosinophil counts in all patients and identified food antigen triggers in most patients.

“Unfortunately, on an individual-patient level, the correlation of Cytosponge eosinophil count and other measures of EoE activity, including biopsy histology, were not consistent,” they said.

Still, patients preferred the sponge-directed method, which the investigators said cost just 15% of what it costs to use endoscopy to guide food reintroduction.

“The sponge study is conducted without sedation during a routine 30-minute office visit without the need for a driver or missing work or school,” they wrote. “There may also be safety benefits to the sponge, as patients are not subjected to the small but quantifiable risks of sedated upper endoscopy.”

The authors said in their practice, they use the Cytosponge when patients have well-controlled symptoms and a lumen diameter of greater than 13 mm. They said the new technique might be a strong selling point to induce patients to use dietary elimination therapy.

“Our data also suggest that similar to biopsy histology, levels of esophageal eosinophilia measured with the Cytosponge are unlikely to be a solitary end point but complementary to other measures of EoE activity such as EREFS and symptom scoring systems,” they concluded.


Alexander JA, Ravi K, Symrk TC, et al. Use of the esophageal sponge in directing food reintroduction in eosinophilic esophagitis. Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. Published online June 10, 2022. doi:10.1016/j.cgh.2022.05.029

By Lois C