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  • Corrective Surgery for Reflux

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    Old 12-15-2000, 03:12 PM   #1
    kdoubleu
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    Question Corrective Surgery for Reflux

    I have acid reflux. I'm on 40mg of prilosec a day and I still have some discomfort and foods I cannot eat. My doc did a throat scope and everything was fine. He says that I might want to have corrective surgery done. I think he said that was called a laproscopy, or that could have been one of the pre-tests they do to see if I would be a candidate for the surgery (I was still coming down from the sedative from the throat scope, so I'm not entirely sure). Anyway, the surgery corrects the problem in the esophagus that causes the reflux. Has anyone had this surgery done? I've heard good things about it, just wanted some feedback.

    [This message has been edited by kdoubleu (edited 12-15-2000).]

     
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    Old 12-23-2000, 11:47 PM   #2
    friendlione
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    I would not consider such a surgery...reflux almost always heals with care, and surgery is always radical, and may not heal or may cause infection...it is not worth it in such a minor illness.
    Besides if it isn't broke why does a doctor want to fix it? (to get money???)

    Do this:

    Raise the head of your bed some,
    don't eat just before bed,
    use Tagamet or someother anti-acid.
    Watch what you eat,
    eat smaller ammounts at a time.
    Get another doctor!

    Take care and this will most likely go away.
    But not without discipline on your part, which surgery won't fix anyway!
    And don't believe in some herbal nonsense either.
    Mine went away, and so did my sister's which had gotten quite bad before she changed her behaviour.
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    Old 12-24-2000, 05:50 AM   #3
    arkie6
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    I would try a low carbohydrate diet before I had surgury. Get a copy of "Protein Power" by Dr. Eades (about $6.00 at any bookstore or online at ******.com). This is discussed in the book as a fix for your problem. Cutting way back on sugars and starches (all grain products, bread, pasta, corn, rice, potatoes, etc.) helped me tremendously. I can't remember the last time that I had heartburn or acid indigestion.
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    Old 12-25-2000, 10:36 AM   #4
    kdoubleu
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    I appreciate your responses. Arkie6, I am on a hypoglycemic diet, which is an elimination of sugar and starches. And I follow all of the tips friend posted. Yet I still have discomfort. I do intend to go to more than one doctor, and will consider every other possiblity before surgery. There is no urgency, so I have time to consider this. Keep the advice coming, I'm eager to find a non-invasive solution!

     
    Old 12-27-2000, 01:54 AM   #5
    fionanz
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    some refux problems can only be solved by surgery because the valve at the bottom end of the oesophagus doesn't work properly in keeping food/liquids in the stomach, maybe trying a different drug will help or taking a antacid liquid before bedtime/after meals.
    Quote:
    Originally posted by kdoubleu:
    I appreciate your responses. Arkie6, I am on a hypoglycemic diet, which is an elimination of sugar and starches. And I follow all of the tips friend posted. Yet I still have discomfort. I do intend to go to more than one doctor, and will consider every other possiblity before surgery. There is no urgency, so I have time to consider this. Keep the advice coming, I'm eager to find a non-invasive solution!

     
    Old 01-25-2001, 02:27 PM   #6
    ReeAnn
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    Dear KDoubleU,

    The surgery you referred to is laproscopic nissen fundoplication. I had this surgery as my reflux/GERD was severe, had a hiatal hernia and my esophagus was badly ulcerated by the constant acid bath. This is rather radical surgery - having you stomach wrapped around the esophagus to form a new valve. I would not recommend it to anyone except as a last resort...

    There are two newer procedures the FDA has recently approved that show a lot of promise in helping with Reflux/GERD. One is the Stretta which uses some kind of electrical wave to create scar tissue and tight the valve between stomach and esophagus. The other procedure is the Bard with does basicly the same thing with stitches.

    Both of these procedures are done endoscopicly with little recovery time.

    I did see someone had posted some good lifestyle change suggests like raising the head of the bed. Try these and an adjustment (with your doctor's help) in medications before considering any procedure. You might want to try one of the PPIs like prevacid. Sometimes one medication will work better than another. Or maybe your dosage isn't high enough. I have heard of some people taking 120mg per day of prilosec.

    Wish you with this. Please keep us posted on how you are doing...

    ReeAnn

     
    Old 01-25-2001, 08:17 PM   #7
    Dusty
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    My sister had the fundoplication surgery and would give anything to take it back. She sufferred from permanent nerve damage from the surgery. Also she can no longer burp or vomit, she suffers from severe bloat and has had to have additional surgery to repair adhesions she got from having this surgery.
    I am sure their are thousands of people who had this surgery successfully and are happy with the results. But if surgery can be avoided then I would definitely avoid it. If you can change your lifestyle and get on the right meds, I would do that before I would jump into surgery.

    [This message has been edited by Dusty (edited 01-25-2001).]

     
    Old 01-29-2001, 11:37 PM   #8
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    I meant to add that it took my sister over a year to heal while following the suggestions I posted above.
    But she did heal.
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    Old 01-30-2001, 06:13 AM   #9
    kdoubleu
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    Thank you for your responses. They are very informative and useful. I would not have even considered surgery if I hadn't exhausted so many other avenues. I have followed all of the tips (plus others) friend posted for almost a year. And I tried Prevacid, which didn't help, and am now on 40mg of Prilosec. My doctor is concerned that this may be too high of a dose to stay on. I intend to see other doctors to get further opinions. The 40mg of Prilosec keeps the GERD at bay, so I am not feeling rushed to have surgery done. And I am always hoping to find an alternative suggestion that I haven't tried, which is why I posted here in the first place.

    Ree Ann, I will check with my doctor about exactly which surgery he meant for me to have done. It sounds like the one you had is rather too radical to consider just yet.

    I appreciate hearing from people who actually had the surgery done, or who knew people who had it done. I'm going to continue looking for a non-invasive solution.

     
    Old 01-30-2001, 06:21 PM   #10
    Breezee
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    I disagree with most of the responses you have gotten. I was miserable before my surgery and I vomited on a daily basis. I have now had the surgery twice, each worked for about 2 years (it's been three years since my last one & I'm thinking they may decide to re-do it again). Recovery for me was not easy & I ended up with a hernia on the last one. But...now that everything is all said & done I would (and will) re-do however many time they need to do it. I had 2+ years after each one of No Heartburn, No Chest Pain, & NO VOMITING!!

    Like I said earlier, recovery was NOT EASY for me but I think it was worth everything I went through. Do make sure you have a Doctor who has done this procedure many times before you and do get a 2nd opinion for peice of mind & to make sure they come to the same conclusion. As far as everyone else's opinion...it all depends on how bad you are now & what getting better is worth to you.

    Best of Luck!!!

    ------------------
    The Breezee Blonde

    [This message has been edited by Breezee (edited 01-30-2001).]

    [This message has been edited by Breezee (edited 01-30-2001).]
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    Old 01-31-2001, 07:41 AM   #11
    kdoubleu
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    Quote:
    Originally posted by Breezee:
    As far as everyone else's opinion...it all depends on how bad you are now & what getting better is worth to you.

    Best of Luck!!!

    That's exactly how I'm feeling right now. I have the discomfort mostly under control with medication, so I don't feel rushed to get surgery done. But if things got as bad as they did for you, I might have to go that route. Hopefully that won't happen. Thanks for your response.

     
    Old 02-01-2001, 06:21 PM   #12
    Dusty
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    On the news this evening they reported a new surgery for reflux. They just use an endoscope to place a few stitches instead of the more involved and riskier fundoplication surgery. You may want to ask your doctor about this procedure. I think I will!

     
    Old 02-01-2001, 07:06 PM   #13
    Harry
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    Hi Dusty and KW,
    That procedure was described earlier in the messsage by ReeAnn.
    God Bless---Harry

     
    Old 02-05-2001, 02:43 PM   #14
    kdoubleu
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    Thanks Harry (and Dusty), I had noticed that info from ReeAnn. I'm going to ask my doc about that next time I see him.

     
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