Repair of 104 failed anti-reflux operations

Atif Iqbal, Ziad Awad, Jennifer Simkins, Ricky Shah, Mumnoon Haider, Vanessa Salinas, Kiran Turaga, Anouki Karu, Sumeet K. Mittal, Charles Filipi

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74 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To assess whether reoperative surgery for failed Nissen fundoplication is beneficial and to classify all mechanisms of failure recognized. SUMMARY BACKGROUND DATA: Antireflux surgery is often necessary, but a 10% failure rate is commonplace. We report results for patients undergoing reoperative surgery and present a nomenclature of mechanisms of failure. METHODS: A total of 104 patients, who had a previous fundoplication for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), underwent reoperative surgery. Manometry (n = 86), endoscopy (n = 101), pH monitoring (n = 27), upright esophagram (n = 90), gastric emptying (n = 26), and symptom assessment (n = 104) were performed prior to reoperative surgery. Patients were also assessed before and during reoperation for mechanism of failure using a newly proposed classification. The operative approach was laparoscopic in 58 patients, via open laparotomy in 12, and a thoracotomy in 34 patients. Follow-up was conducted by phone interview and was completed in 97 patients (97%; 3 were deceased) with a mean follow-up of 32 months (range, 1-146 months). RESULTS: The conversion rate to laparotomy for laparoscopic patients was 8%. The perioperative complication rate was 32%. One patient died of respiratory insufficiency after a laparotomy. Seven patients required additional surgery for correction of persistent or recurrent symptoms. The short and long-term complication rate was similar for the different operative approachs. Symptom resolution (rare or absent) occurred in 74% of patients with dysphagia, 75% with heartburn, 85% with regurgitation, and 94% with chest pain. The overall post-reoperative patient satisfaction was 7 on a scale of 1 to 10 and 3 on a scale of 1 to 4 when patients were asked to grade the operative result. There was no difference in the symptom resolution for patients operated upon by the laparoscopic approach as compared with laparotomy, but those patients undergoing a Collis gastroplasty had poorer results. The preoperative accuracy of assessment for mechanism of failure was 78%. A nomenclature of mechanisms of failure is included to aide reoperative assessment and new mechanisms of failure are described. CONCLUSION: Reoperative surgery results for GERD are satisfactory. A variety of operative approaches proved equally effective. Poorer results were observed in patients with more advanced disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)42-51
Number of pages10
JournalAnnals of Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery


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