Oesophageal stricture is a complication of oesophageal reflux and may itself be complicated by bolus obstruction. We reviewed the records of patients presenting with dysphagia and who were found to have benign oesophageal strictures. We studied the outcome of bolus obstruction in 13 episodes affecting eight patients. In six episodes Coca-Cola was administered on the day before endoscopy, and in all these patients the bolus had cleared. In seven episodes nothing was administered before endoscopy, and in all seven a bolus was evident at endoscopy. In five of these seven the bolus was removed piecemeal and in each of these instances the endoscope had to be passed between two and five times. In the remaining two instances the procedure was abandoned and the patients returned to the ward for the administration of Coca-Cola. At subsequent endoscopy these patients were found to be clear of any bolus. These results suggest that the administration of Coca-Cola (or other aerated drinks) may clear a bolus in the acutely obstructed oesophagus
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