Scleroderma is a rare disease in which a person's immune system begins to destroy normal, healthy tissues (autoimmune disease). As a result, connective tissue of the skin, lungs, and internal organs—especially the esophagus, kidneys, and digestive tract—is replaced with scar tissue. This change causes the tissues to become stiff and the muscles to not work as well.
In the esophagus, this makes it:
CREST syndrome is a limited type of scleroderma that can also affect the esophagus.
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