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Achalasia means without relaxation. The term refers to the lack of relaxation of the lower esophageal sphincter on swallowing. In contrast the condition of `chalasia' refers to an inappropriately relaxed lower esophageal sphincter. 3

Patients with achalasia complain of dysphagia and chest pain. Many may experience more trouble with liquids than with solids. The dysphagia tends to be slowly progressive. They become socially isolated because they are afraid to eat in the company of other people.


Adrian P. Ireland