Background: Preoperative endoscopic assessment of the failed fundoplication is instrumental in diagnosis and surgical management. Endoscopy is a routine and essential part of the workup for a failed fundoplication, but no clear guidelines exist for reporting endoscopic findings. This study aimed to compare endoscopic findings reported by community physicians (gastroenterologists and surgeons) with the findings of the authors (esophageal center) for patients who underwent reoperative intervention after a previous antireflux procedure. Methods: Retrospective review of a prospectively maintained database was performed to identify patients who underwent reoperation after a failed antireflux operation between 1 December 2003 and 30 June 2010. Endoscopic findings as reported by the outside physician and by the esophageal center endoscopist were reviewed and compared. Results: During the study period, 229 patients underwent reoperation. Of these patients, 20 did not have endoscopy performed by an outside physician and were excluded from the study, leaving 208 patients. The endoscopic reports of the esophageal center physician included 97 cases of hiatal hernia (64 type 1 and 33 types 2 and 3), 52 slipped fundoplications, 61 disrupted fundoplications, 30 intrathoracic fundoplications, 25 twisted fundoplications, 14 two-compartment stomachs, and 27 cases of Barrett's esophagus. Outside physicians identified 68% of the hiatal hernias and 61% of the paraesophageal hernias reported by the authors. Only 32% of the outside reports mentioned a previous fundoplication. Furthermore, only 17% of the slipped fundoplications and 30% of the disrupted fundoplications were so described. Outside physicians identified 19 of the 27 patients with Barrett's esophagus. Conclusion: Fundoplication changes described by the general endoscopist are inadequate. With an increasing population of patients who have undergone prior antireflux surgery, incorporation of fundoplication assessment in an endoscopic curriculum may be helpful.
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