The Plummer-Vinson syndrome (also known as the Paterson-Kelly syndrome or the Paterson-Brown-Kelly syndrome) classically involves a triad of findings.


Clinical features:

(1) iron deficiency, with anemia, angular cheilitis, koilonychia and glossitis

(2) dysphagia and/or choking, typically with solids

(3) an esophageal web in the upper esophagus (in the postcricoid portion of the hypopharynx)


Not all patients have iron deficiency at the time of diagnosis. Some of these patients have a history of iron deficiency in the past. Others may have pernicious anemia.


The iron deficiency may be precipitated by concurrent gastrointestinal diseases such as celiac disease, diaphragmatic hernia or peptic ulcer disease.


The risk of a squamous cell carcinoma is increased so patients should be carefully evaluated and followed.


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