Reflux Disease Surgery
LoneStar Specializes in Reflux Disease Surgeries Near Frisco, TX. We Are Conveniently Located at 5757 Warren Pkwy. Suite 204, Frisco, TX. For More Information Call Us Today at (972) 232-7171 or Simply Request an Appointment Online. We Are Ready to Help You Achieve Your Weight Loss Goals!
When people suffer from acid reflux symptoms chronically, this is often called indigestion. Typically, this occurs when stomach acids travel into the esophagus causing reflux. Refluxed stomach acid can lead to a burning sensation in the chest or throat.
Heartburn that occurs more than twice a week is called gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD). Symptom severity can differ from one person to the next. In other words, some individuals can have “silent’’ reflux. Others experience severe symptoms causing chest pain, hoarseness in the morning, or trouble swallowing or even chronic coughs.
What Causes Acid Reflux?
The esophagus is a long, muscular organ allowing swallowed food to travel into the stomach. The esophagus is contained in the chest cavity whereas the stomach is found in the abdominal cavity.
The esophagus has a valve called the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) separating the esophagus from the stomach. The function of the LES is ensuring stomach contents do not reflux back into the esophagus. Reflux that happens from time to time is normal and usually does not cause any symptoms. Chronic reflux, however, can cause ulcers, an erosion of the lining of the esophagus, strictures, or severe inflammation.
Reflux is a mechanical problem. It is caused by the sphincter (LES) being dysfunctional, sometimes, a hiatal hernia preventing the sphincter from working properly. Foods, chemicals and certain medications can lower the function and muscular tone. Examples include:
- Certain Medications
- Anticholinergic drugs ( urinary tract disorder medications)
- Asthma Medications
- Calcium Channel Blockers (High Blood Pressure)
- Diazepam (anxiety disorders and seizure medication)
- Nitrates (Angina)
- Opioid Analgesics ( Prescription pain medications)
- Some Antidepressants
When the stomach and the LES are displaced into the chest cavity by a hiatal hernia, patients often experience worsening reflux. The hiatal hernia decreases the sphincter muscle tone allowing gastric acid to reflux.
Over time chronic acid reflux can lead to changes in the cells that line the esophagus. This is known as Barrett’s Esophagus. Patients can also develp pre-cancerous changes (dysplasia) as a result of chronic reflux. Once a patient develops these findings, careful and close follow-up is mandatory with an annual upper endoscopy to rule out the development of cancer.
In most cases reflux can be managed with simple strategies. If you are experiencing reflux you should visit with your doctor for diagnosis and treatment. Pain in the chest can also signify serious conditions such as heart disease so a professional medical consultation is required to distinguish heartburn from something more significant.
Once diagnosed properly, reflux can be managed with several strategies including lifestyle changes and medical therapy
- Avoid causative agents (STOP SMOKING and ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION)
- Weight loss
- Avoid over eating and late night meals
- Elevate the head of the bed a few inches
- Antacids (tums, pepto-bismol)
- H2 blockers (zantac, pepcid)
- Proton pump inhibitors (prilosec, prevacid, zegerid, nexium)
- Your physician may order additional testing including: x-ray (upper gi series), endoscopy, manometry. pH
- (BRAVO) testing
Surgical Treatment Of Acid Reflux
Most GERD symptoms will respond to lifestyle changes and medical management. People who do not respond to conservative management should consider surgery. Over time the cost of the medicines can be significant and some patients will elect to have surgery to correct the condition. Studies have shown that results are better if the surgery is done before the patients GERD becomes severe (maximum medical therapy). Any patient who has developed Barrett’s esophagus or pre-cancerous changes (dysplasia) in the lower esophagus should strongly consider anti-reflux surgery. There are recent studies that report the regression of these findings in some patients who undergo the operation. Patients with Barrett’s esophagus or dysplastic changes who undergo the surgery should continue to have close follow-up including endoscopy on a regular scheduled basis until the condition resolves.
LoneStar Bariatric’s Medical Team Specializes in Hernia Surgeries in Frisco, TX We Are Ready to Help You Feel Better! Call Us Today for More Information at (972) 232-7171. Visit Us Today at 5757 Warren Pkwy. Suite 204, Frisco, TX 75034.
We will discuss the differences below. First, inguinal hernias more commonly in men but women can also experience this. The symptoms are variable and usually start as a mild discomfort, pain or bulge. Even simple coughing or straining can lead to worsening symptoms. Exercising or weight lifting can be difficult and cause worsening symptoms. Most often the hernia or bulge will reduce and not become trapped.
Since most hernias are not trapped or incarcerated, the surgeries are elective. We can schedule a convenient time to operate. The operation is performed laparoscopically with only a few small incisions. The down time from work is limited and most people can return to work, daily activities and even limited exercise in one to two weeks.
However, if your hernia becomes trapped or incarcerated this can be a surgical emergency. We recommend you phone us immediately so we can properly assess you and make necessary arrangements.
The repairs generally take less than an hour for non emergent hernia surgery. Typically, we will place a mesh as a secondary strength, or reinforcement layer. This layer adds additional strength making this part of body comparatively stronger than the opposite side.
These bulge defects occur on the abdominal wall. We want to make sure you understand the difference and point out the abdomen is made a of a wall, this is the protective layer to your intestines and organs, such as the liver, colon, spleen and the like. It is important to remember that we are discussing repair of defects, hernias or bulges of the abdominal wall. These typically occur above the belly-button or umbilicus but can occur at the umbilicus. This is called an umbilical hernia.
These defects, hernias or bulges are also typically repaired laparoscopically. People can return to work to faster with less pain. These hernias are also repaired with mesh. Again, this adds an additional layer of strength. Surgeons use mesh as we want to avoid repair failure and the possibility of recurrence.
This particular type of hernia is not a true hernia in the classic sense. These defects occur at the site from a previous operation. Unfortunately, these hernias can result from surgeries that may be ten or twenty years old or older! Also, these incisional hernias usually occur from big surgical scars. Typically, we see this from colon surgery, Cesarian (C-section) incisions and previous hernia repairs. We take the same surgical approach and attempt to repair these defects laparoscopically with mesh. Sometimes the abdominal wall may have a “Swiss cheese’ appearance and require multiple incisions to repair and cover the defects properly.
As you can now appreciate, abdominal wall hernias can be rather complex and require much experience to properly manage these. We will be happy to discuss this further if you think you may have a hernia or if you know you have a hernia and would like to discuss surgery. Please call us or contact us via email.