Plummer-Vinson syndrome (PVS) is a rare entity characterized by upper esophageal webs and iron deficiency anemia. We report a case of PVS whose esophageal web was rapidly improved by iron therapy. A 77-year-old woman was admitted to our hospital with complaints of dysphagia, vomiting, shortness of breath and weight loss for 1 month. Physical examination revealed conjunctival pallor, koilonychia, angular cheilitis and smooth tongue, and laboratory findings were consistent with microcytic hypochromic anemia with iron deficiency. Gastrointestinal endoscopy and barium-swallow esophagography detected a web that prevented passage of the endoscope into the upper portion of the esophagus. The patient received oral iron therapy daily; the hemoglobin concentration rose to 8.9 g/dl and the complaints of dysphagia were dramatically improved after 2 weeks, with improvement of luminal stenosis confirmed by gastrointestinal endoscopy and barium-swallow esophagography. The PVS described in this report had a distinct clinical course, showing very rapid improvement of dysphagia and esophageal web after 2 weeks of oral iron therapy.
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