Role of Confocal Laser Endomicroscopy in Early Detection of Upper Gastrointestinal Malignancy in High Risk Patients

Document Type : Research Articles


1 Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences, Jamshoro, Pakistan.

2 Department of Biochemistry, Bilawal Medical College, Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences, Jamshoro, Pakistan.

3 Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Medical Research Centre, Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences, Jamshoro, Pakistan.

4 Department of Gastroenterology, Indus Medical College and Hospital, Tando Mohammad Khan, Pakistan.


Background: Upper gastrointestinal malignancies are a major global health burden. Early diagnosis of upper gastrointestinal premalignant and malignant lesions is crucial for improving prognosis and reducing morbidity and mortality. The purpose of this study was to investigate the diagnostic accuracy of confocal laser endomicroscopy (CLE) in detecting upper gastrointestinal premalignant and early malignant lesions in high-risk patients, as well as diagnosing patients with inconclusive white light endoscopy (WLE) and histopathology results.Methods: It was a cross-sectional study that included ninety (n = 90) high-risk patients with inconclusive diagnoses of upper gastrointestinal lesions on WLE and WLE-based biopsy histopathology. These patients underwent CLE, and the definitive diagnosis was confirmed using CLE and CLE-target biopsy histopathology. Diagnostic accuracy was determined by comparing the sensitivity, specificity, predictive values, and accuracy between the procedures. Result: The mean patient age was 47.43 ± 11.18 years. CLE and target biopsy confirmed that 30 (33.3%) patients had normal histology, while 60 (66.7%) patients were diagnosed with gastritis, gastric intestinal metaplasia, high-grade dysplasia, adenocarcinoma, Barrett’s esophagus, and squamous cell carcinoma of the esophagus. The results of CLE were superior to those of WLE in terms of diagnostic parameters. Additionally, CLE demonstrated nearly similar results in sensitivity (98.33%), specificity (100%), positive predictive value (100%), negative predictive value (96.77%), and accuracy (98.89%) when compared to CLE-target biopsy. Conclusion: CLE showed higher diagnostic accuracy in differentiating normal, premalignant and malignant lesions. It effectively diagnosed patients who initially had inconclusive WLE and/or biopsy results. Furthermore, early detection of upper gastrointestinal premalignant or malignant lesions may improve prognosis and reduce morbidity and mortality.


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