Nissen Fundoplication: Where You Go First Matters

Nissen Fundoplication: Where You Go First Matters

Patrick from Katy sent us this question: “I have been on medication for acid reflux for about 10 years and just last year it seems to have gotten worse. My doctor suggested surgery, so he referred me to a general surgeon who sent me for endoscopy test and pH study. After testing he told me that my esophagus is a little weak but working and that the normal acid level is 73 while mine is 78. He went ahead and schedule surgery. I had 360 Nissen fundoplication surgery on the June 29th but I had difficulty swallowing after surgery. He arranged for redo on July 18th and conversion to 270 partial fundoplication. Since surgery, I have been having constant burning in my throat, even finding hard to swallow especially cold liquid but the pain is increasing every day, even to the point that I am have pain that goes from my throat to my head. My doctor thinks the wrap is still tight, but when I talked to the surgical doctor, he told me there is nothing he can do for me and the wrap is not tight. I went to see a GI doctor and she said I have ineffective esophageal motility and that I should not have had the surgery. I have visited ER more than twice as the pain increases. Please help I don’t know what to do.

Dear Patrick,

Proper diagnosis and patient selection in addition to flawless surgical technique are key components of successful and safe acid reflux surgery. GERD is a complicated disease. An experienced acid reflux specialist who understands GERD pathophysiology is more equipped than a general gastroenterologist to interpret acid reflux testing results to recommend the most suitable solution to your acid reflux problem. An expert and skilled acid reflux surgeon is more equipped than a general surgeon to deliver a flawless Nissen fundoplication.

At Houston Heartburn and Reflux Center, our acid reflux specialists offer state-of-the-art A to Z management of acid reflux disease. Properly performed Nissen fundoplication remains the most reliable treatment for acid reflux disease. Difficulty swallowing after Nissen fundoplication indicates a technical problem. I recommend evaluation by an expert acid reflux specialist to figure out the cause of your symptoms and offer the most suitable and permanent solution.