Developmental obstruction in the esophagus. Sometimes the esophagus does not run all the way from the back of the throat to the stomach. Instead, the esophagus terminates in a blind pouch part way to the stomach. Children who have esophageal atresia often have an abnormal fistula or connection (known as a tracheo-esophageal fistula) between one of the sections of the esophagus and the trachea (windpipe). This abnormality occurs in about 1 out of every 2500 live births.