Achalasia Awareness Organization



Achalasia is a rare, incurable and progressive autoimmune esophageal  motility disease with only palliative treatment. Achalasia sufferers  have damage to the nerves of the esophagus which makes swallowing and  the passing of food and liquid into the stomach extremely difficult. It  is of unknown etiology. Believed to have a genetic predisposition, with  an autoimmune component and a viral trigger, approximately 1 in 100,000  are diagnosed annually. Prevalence (existing cases) and incidence (newly  diagnosed cases) varies greatly per country. According to recent  studies, rates of incidence seem to be rising. However the question  remains whether this is due to raised awareness or other environmental  factors.

Within the diagnosis of Achalasia there are three types, l, ll and lll, which compounds its complexity. To add  to the frustration of this disease, most doctors will never see a case  of it in their entire careers. Thus it is most often misdiagnosed  causing years of pain and struggle. There is a desperate need for  research and awareness to bring this disease to the public and in turn  to medical personnel so that those with Achalasia can procure timely  diagnosis and treatment. autoimmune disease rare disease


Medical Advisors

Dr. Siva Raja
Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Cleveland Clinic.

Dr. Scott Gabbard 

Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Cleveland Clinic

Dr. Pankaj Jay Pasricha  
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Director, Johns Hopkins Center for Neurogastroenterology

Dr Steven Demeester
Thoracic Surgery, Portland, Oregon  

Formerly with USC Keck School of Medicine

Dr. John Pandolfino
Department of Gastroenterology, Northwestern Division Chief, Chicago

Dr. Homero Rivas
Director of Innovative Surgery, Stanford Assistant Professor of Surgery

Dr. Joel Richter
USF Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition, Tampa, Florida

Dr. Haru Inoue
Director of Digestive Disease Center, Showa University, Koto Toyosu Hospital
Developer of POEM procedure in humans.