Background: High-resolution manometry (HRM) is the gold standard for diagnosing esophageal motility disorders (EMDs); however, it requires specialized equipment. The development of more accessible screening examinations is expected. We evaluated the utility of barium esophagography (BE) screening using two novel findings to diagnose EMDs. Methods: Between January 2013 and October 2020, 244 patients with suspected EMDs who underwent both HRM and BE were analyzed. The EMD diagnosis was based on HRM findings using Chicago Classification version 3.0. BE was performed using sequential esophagography with barium sulfate. Three conventional BE findings (air-fluid level, rosary-bead/corkscrew appearance, and absent/weak peristalsis) and two novel BE findings (wave appearance and supra-junctional ballooning) were used for diagnosis. Results: The sensitivity and specificity of BE screening using the two novel findings and conventional findings to diagnose EMDs were 79.4% and 88%, respectively [area under the receiver-operating characteristic curve (AUC) = 0.837]. Without these novel findings, they were 63.9% and 96%, respectively (AUC = 0.800), respectively. Achalasia was highly correlated with the air-fluid level (88.7%). Absent contractility was highly correlated with absent/weak peristalsis (85.7%). Relatively high correlations were observed between distal esophageal spasm and rosary-bead/corkscrew appearance (60%), and between achalasia and wave appearance (59.7%). The intra-observer reproducibility and inter-observer agreement for individual BE findings were 84.4% and 75%, respectively. Wave appearance was associated with higher integrated relaxation pressure (IRP) and shorter distal latency. Supra-junctional ballooning was associated with higher IRP. Conclusions: BE screening using two additional novel findings to diagnose EMDs could be useful in general practice.
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