Dr. Stephen Matter M.D. in Normal, Illinois is using a fairly new technology to detect and diagnose precancerous conditions in the esophagus. He treats patients with chronic heartburn, acid reflux and indigestion caused by stomach acid getting into the esophagus.
Gary Boundy is a patient of Dr. Matter’s. He has been dealing with effects of Parkinson’s disease since 2006. One effect has been restrictions in his esophagus making it difficult for him to swallow food. Dr. Matter does a procedure to stretch Boundy’s esophagus once every five weeks.
During a recent procedure, Matter was able to use some new technology to take a closer look at the cell structure in Boundy’s esophagus. Using Cellvizio, Matter was able to detect some precancerous cells, called Barrett’s Esophagus.
Boundy says, “Cancer has run in my family. I lost a daughter at twenty-one to Leukemia. So I’ve very relieved when I don’t hear back from the clinic. That means nothing is showing up.” The treatment allowed Dr. Matter to see those precancerous cells that he previously could not.
“It’s put my mind at ease because I know they’re going down and checking the esophagus. And a big thing on my mind.. is cancer,” explained Boundy.
Cellvizio is a microscopic camera that allows the doctor to view the esophagus at a cellular level in real time. “This is the first microscope to go through the scope that I’ve ever heard of. The ability in real time to determine where the abnormal cells are in the esophagus is a huge advance in helping that prevent that turn to cancer,” explained Dr. Matter.
The technology has been around since 2014, however, the only place in Central Illinois to receive treatment with it is in Normal. “We’re the only ones between Chicago and St. Louis that use the Cellvizio to determine dysplastic cells from Barrett’s Esophagus,’ explained Matter.
Dr. Matter has already treated over fifty patients, including Boundy, with the Cellvizio, in just four weeks.