Fundoplication Surgery For GERD
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease or GERD is a condition in which the stomach contents flows back into the opposite direction and enters the esophagus. Heart burn or a chest burn is an extremely common condition and is better known as GERD.
It happens because the sphincter muscle at the base of the esophagus which acts like a valve controlling the regurgitation of the stomach contents inward starts to malfunction. The valve that acts as a separation between the stomach and the esophagus starts to abnormally relax in this condition and allows the stomach acids to flow through.
is specifically meant to target this condition of the Lower Esophageal Sphincter muscle.
GERD is a condition which is associated with a lot of discomfort. The contents of the stomach contain the acids and gastric juices secreted by the stomach to break down the food. They are quite corrosive in action and can end up damaging the delicate mucus lining of the esophagus causing ulcers and bleeding spots. Other than these, GERD is also associated with swallowing difficulty, regurgitation, nausea and heartburn.
GERD is commonly treated with lifestyle changes, like that of diet (eating non spicy bland diet is advisable) and exercise (regular exercise improves the basic digestive process in the body). It is also treated with antacids, protein pump inhibitors and histamine receptor blockers. All the three classes of drugs work by inhibiting the production of excess stomach acids in the body or by neutralizing the acids with a base.
However, sometimes all these methods may fail. In that case, surgery is essential in fixing the problem permanently.
What is Fundoplication Surgery?
The procedure is better known as Nissen Fundoplication. It is a procedure which can go a long way in improving the quality of life. About 90% of patients get immediate relief from GERD. It is done laproscopically with minimal invasion. It typically requires one to three days of stay in the hospital.
The lower esophageal sphincter muscle is repaired with this surgery. During this surgery, the upper part of the stomach or the fundus are wrapped off around the esophagus and attached to the lower part of the esophagus below the diaphragm. The procedure strengthens the sphincter muscle. Additionally, a valve that opens and closes in a flap is made at the entry point of the stomach. Stomach pressure causes the flap to inflate and this process further strengthens the valve which prevents the reflux. This surgery restores the normal pressure in the concerned organs so that the sphincter muscle could work properly.
could have some complications in about 2-4% of the population after wrapping of the stomach. However, the benefits are far more than the complications.