Anti-reflux surgery is used to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD. This condition is also known as acid reflux disease. This condition is the result of a valve or sphincter at the top of the stomach that is weaker than normal. This weakened valve allows acid and food from the stomach to travel back up into the esophagus and leads to irritation. The valve is an area of thickened muscle located where the esophagus passes through the diaphragm and enters the abdominal cavity and connects to the stomach. That opening in the diaphragm muscle, called the “diaphragmatic hiatus,” is supposed to be relatively tight around the esophagus. In certain conditions, the diaphragm hiatus can widen to an abnormal size and when that happens it is called a hiatal hernia. A hiatal hernia allows the stomach to begin protruding through the diaphragm and into the chest cavity. It is often a combination of a weakened valve and a hiatal hernia that contribute to the symptoms of GERD.
Most patients report symptoms which include:
During anti-reflux surgery any hiatal hernia, where the diaphragm muscle is widened and some of the stomach is herniated up into the chest, will be addressed. The stomach is brought completely back into the abdominal cavity and the opening in the diaphragm is narrowed with stitches to prevent the stomach from going back up into the chest cavity. Then the topmost part of the stomach, called the fundus, is wrapped (like a hug) around the weakened valve at the bottom of the esophagus to provide it with more strength. In this way, when the stomach squeezes, instead of acid shooting up through the weakened valve and into the esophagus like before, now that same squeeze will help the valve squeeze closed and stop the acid from reaching the esophagus and keep it in the stomach where it belongs. The doctor will perform this surgery using laparoscopic techniques. During the laparoscopic surgery, the doctor will:
This type of surgery is preferred because it reduces post-operative pain, allows for quicker recovery and leaves minimal scarring.
We accept all major insurance plans that provide members with out-of-network benefits. We participate with Medicare and 1199. We do not take Medicaid or any 3rd party managed Medicaid plans at this time. Please call our office for more information at (212) 203-2146.
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