Purpose of review
There is no standard protocol for managing globus pharyngeus. Checking the recent developments in this field regularly is of paramount importance.
The commonest symptoms for which proton pump inhibitors are prescribed are globus (73%), followed by choking episodes (66%) and chronic cough (62%). Opinions remain divided about the role of upper esophageal sphincter hypertonicity in globus sensation. Upper aerodigestive tract malignancy is rare and must be excluded. Hypertrophy of the base of the tongue, heterotopic gastric mucosa, curled epiglottis, thyroid enlargement, rare benign or malignant tumors of the pharynx, excessive tension and Eagle's syndrome are possible causes. Flexible endoscopy is a frequently used examination, but there is a ‘blind zone’ under any upper aerodigestive tract malignancy, requiring rigid endoscopy for some indications. Barium swallow pharyngoesophagography should not be requested systematically for cancer detection. Dual-probe 24 h pH monitoring can help in the diagnosis of reflux. Impedance recording can be useful for the detection of acidic and nonacidic liquid and mist reflux events. Manometric measurements are consistent. Laryngopharyngeal symptoms, such as throat clearing, hoarseness, cough, and globus pharyngeus, are slower to resolve than esophageal symptoms. Nocturnal recovery of gastric acid secretion was demonstrated even with proton pump inhibitors. The symptoms disappeared with an additional H2 receptor antagonist.
More awareness is required for patients complaining of globus pharyngeus.