Chest pain that may spread outward to the arms, back, neck, or jaw. This pain can feel similar to a heart attack . Other symptoms include difficulty or inability to swallow food or liquid, pain with swallowing, the feeling that food is caught in the center of the chest, and a burning sensation in the chest. Treatment for esophageal spasm includes treating other conditions that may make esophageal spasms worse, such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). • Changing the foods you eat. Your doctor may tell you to eat certain foods and liquids to make swallowing easier. • Dilation. In this treatment, a device is placed down your esophagus to carefully expand any narrow areas of your esophagus. You may need to have the treatment more than once.
Esophageal spasm means that contractions of the esophagus are irregular, uncoordinated, and sometimes powerful. This condition may be called diffuse esophageal spasm, or DES. These spasms can prevent food from reaching the stomach. When this happens, the food gets stuck in the esophagus.
Surgery. Surgery is sometimes used in people who have a problem that affects the lower esophageal muscle (achalasia). • Medicines. If you can't have dilation or surgery, your doctor may suggest medicines, such as botulinum toxin , to relax the muscles in the esophagus.