Reflux surgery has long been considered the most effective treatment to provide relief from acid reflux symptoms and to help prevent more severe esophageal conditions. Traditionally, reflux surgery involved an open abdominal or laparoscopic approach to reach and repair the lower esophagus. Now, there are a couple of reflux surgery options for patients to choose from.
In addition to Nissen fundoplication, our reflux surgeons offer a revolutionary procedure known as Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication (TIF) can be used to reconstruct the body’s natural anti-reflux barrier and provide effective relief for GERD symptoms without the risks associated with traditional surgery.
Chronic acid reflux, also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), is a digestive condition characterized by abnormal flow of stomach acid back into the lower esophagus. Left untreated, GERD can cause significant damage to the esophagus resulting in a variety of health problems, including ulcers, strictures, Barrett’s esophagus and esophageal cancer.
Advantages of Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication (TIF)
As a minimally invasive, incisionless alternative, the TIF procedure offers significant benefits to patients compared with Nissen fundoplication and other reflux surgery methods. The unique advantages of TIF include the following:
- TIF is incisionless. While traditional reflux surgery requires incisions and dissection of the abdominal anatomy to reach the esophagus, the entire TIF procedure is performed with an endoscopic device through the mouth, resulting in greatly reduced post-operative pain and no visible scars.
- TIF minimizes the risk of complications. Clinical studies have shown that TIF achieves similar long-term results compared with Nissen Fundoplication, but with reduced post-operative pain and a much lower risk of uncomfortable side effects that often follow open or laparoscopic abdominal surgery, including dysphagia (difficulty swallowing), gas bloat, flatulence, and nausea.
- TIF is an outpatient procedure with faster recovery. Without the need to make abdominal incisions, the TIF procedure can be performed in a shorter period of time, which also shortens the amount of time a patient spends under anesthesia. In turn, patients are able to recover much more quickly and can return home within several hours of surgery, as opposed to spending 1-2 days in the hospital following traditional reflux surgery.
Who Is Eligible for the TIF Procedure?
While TIF is an excellent option for individuals considering reflux surgery, not everyone is a candidate for this procedure. In order to ensure the best surgical outcomes and lowest risk of recurrence of GERD symptoms, a proper candidate should meet the following criteria:
- Chronic symptoms of acid reflux
- Wish to avoid long-term medication use or unresponsive to current medications
- No severe anatomical abnormalities of the esophagus, including hiatal hernias greater than 2 cm, stricture, obstruction, or infection
- At least 18 years old
If you are deemed ineligible for the TIF procedure, this does not necessarily mean that you cannot undergo reflux surgery. You may still be a candidate for the highly effective and well-established Nissen Fundoplication procedure. During a thorough consultation, our experienced surgeons can help determine the best form of reflux surgery based on your needs and individual condition.
Find Out More About Your Reflux Surgery Options
If you suffer from GERD and are looking for effective relief from symptoms while decreasing your dependency on medications, you might be a candidate for the TIF procedure. Performed by world renowned thoracic surgeons at our state-of-the-art surgical facility in Beverly Hills, the procedure offers new hope for GERD sufferers who don’t want to resort to more invasive traditional surgery to find relief.
To learn more about TIF or to schedule your initial consultation with an expert thoracic surgeon, please call (888) 593-1042 or fill out our contact form and a member of our team will be in touch with you.