Antireflux is a surgical procedure that is performed to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease (GORD).
GORD is a chronic condition characterised by the regurgitation of stomach acid into the oesophagus, causing heartburn, acid regurgitation, and other discomforting symptoms.. It can be extremely uncomfortable.
When lifestyle changes and medication therapy fail to adequately manage GORD symptoms, an antireflux procedure may be an option. It can also mean freedom from long-term GORD medication, offering a more convenient solution.
Who would benefit from an antireflux procedure?
If you have GORD that is not responding to medication, an antireflux procedure may be a good option for you.
Antireflux procedures can effectively relieve the symptoms of GORD and improve your quality of life.
What is involved in an antireflux procedure?
There are two main types of antireflux procedures: laparoscopic fundoplication and open fundoplication.
- Laparoscopic fundoplication: The most common type of antireflux surgery. This is performed using small incisions in the abdomen. During laparoscopic fundoplication, the surgeon wraps the upper part of the stomach around the lower end of the esophagus to create a barrier that prevents stomach acid from backing up.
- Open fundoplication: This is a more invasive procedure that is performed through a larger incision in the abdomen.
Potential risks of antireflux procedures
The risks of antireflux procedures are similar to the risks of any surgery and include bleeding, infection, as well as complications related to anaesthetic. All potential risks and complications will be fully explained at your consultation, prior to the procedure.
Benefits of antireflux procedures
The benefits of antireflux procedures include:
- Long-term relief from GORD symptoms: Antireflux surgeries aim to reduce or eliminate troublesome symptoms such as heartburn, acid regurgitation, cough, and chest pain.
- Medication reduction or cessation: Many individuals can decrease or discontinue their reliance on medications, reducing associated costs and potential side effects.
- Reduced risk of complications from GORD, e.g. Barrett’s oesophagus, oesophageal cancer
- Improved quality of life: Successful antireflux surgery may allow individuals to resume a normal diet, engage in physical activities, and enjoy a better overall quality of life.
Who is a good candidate for an antireflux procedure?
You may be a good candidate for an antireflux procedure if you have GORD that is not responding to medication and is causing significant symptoms. Other factors that may make you a good candidate for an antireflux procedure include:
- Age 18 or older
- Good general health
- No history of major surgery
- No history of bleeding disorders
What should I expect after an antireflux procedure?
You will need to stay in the hospital for a few days after your antireflux procedure. You will also need to take it easy and avoid strenuous activity for several weeks. You may experience some pain and discomfort after your surgery, but this should subside over time. You will also need to follow your doctor’s instructions carefully to prevent complications.
If you are considering an antireflux procedure, why not arrange a consultation appointment. Our team can assess your suitability and also explain all the potential risks and benefits of the procedure so that you can decide if an antireflux procedure is the right choice for you.