Achalasia is a rare esophageal motility disorder of the esophagus affecting 1 in 100,000 people worldwide. Achalasia makes it difficult to swallow solid or liquid foods. The act of swallowing causes a wave or peristalsis in the esophagus. Peristalsis is the succession of waves of involuntary muscular contractions in the esophagus, stomach and the intestines, which transports food and waste products from the mouth to the colon. In achalasia, peristalsis in the esophagus is diminished, erratic or no longer functioning. This condition occurs when the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) (muscle located between the esophagus and the stomach) doesn’t relax sufficiently, which makes it hard for food or liquids to pass from the esophagus into the stomach.


People with achalasia have trouble swallowing or feel like food is stuck in their esophagus. This is known as dysphagia. This symptom can cause coughing and increase the risk of aspirating into the lungs, or inhaling or choking on food. Other symptoms include:
Pain or discomfort in your chest
Weight loss
Intense pain or discomfort after eating
Regurgitation of undigested foods and or liquids

3 Types of Achalasia

Type I (classic achalasia), there is no significant pressurization within the body of the esophagus.

Type II (achalasia with compression), there is rapid pan-esophageal pressurization.

Type III (spastic achalasia), this swallow shows spastic contraction