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Metastatic Pattern of Spread of Esophageal Cancer  adult

Introduction: Esophageal cancer can be adenocarcinoma (typically in the lower esophagus, arising from reflux and Barrett's esophagus) or squamous cell carcinoma (typically in the upper esophagus, from smoking or alcohol).

Hematogenous metastases are more common in adenocarcinomas.

Prevalence: Rare Metastasis Frequency: Common

AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2005 Feb;184(2):487-90. PMID: 15671368

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J Am Coll Surg. 2003 Jun;196(6):866-73. PMID: 12788422

Primary Tumor:

 Characteristics Comments
Esophagus Local Wall Thickening

Known Metastatic Locations:

SiteFrequencyCharacteristics Comments
Local Lymph Nodes Common mediastinal nodes, gastrohepatic nodes
Liver CommonHypoenhancing most common site for distant metastases of adenocarcinoma (second most common for SCC)
Lung Parenchyma CommonNodule most common site for distant metastases from SCC (second most common for adeno)
Bone UncommonLytic
Peritoneum Rare
Adrenal Glands Rare
Spleen Very Rare
Heart Very Rare
Kidney Very Rare
Thyroid Very Rare