Antireflux surgery involves a number of procedures intended to control a patient’s GERD symptoms. The traditional surgical approach for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is Nissen fundoplication. This procedure involves:
- Making an incision so that the surgeons may gain access to the stomach area.
- Detaching the upper portion of the stomach (fundus) from connective tissue.
- Wrapping the fundus of the stomach around the esophagus.
- Stitching the fundus in place (fundoplication).
Antireflux surgery works by mimicking the closing function of the esophagus valve, which is not performing properly and causing a patient’s GERD symptoms. Overall, antireflux surgery is very effective when it comes to eliminating the symptoms of GERD. Studies have shown that 89.5% of patients continue to be free of GERD symptoms 10 years after surgery.
However, for all of the good that it has done, the Nissen procedure has several negative side effects. 26% of patients have difficult swallowing after surgery, 36% experience bloating, and 65% have increased flatulence from the Nissen procedure.
What is the TIF Procedure?
To avoid the side effects associated with Nissen fundoplication, specially trained physicians have adopted Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication (or the TIF 2.0 procedure). Unlike Nissen fundoplication, the TIF procedure is performed through the patient’s mouth and esophagus. The intent is to produce the same results as other types of antireflux surgery without making a single incision on the patient.
Benefits of the TIF Procedure Compared to Nissen Fundoplication
The TIF procedure has several benefits over Nissen fundoplication when it comes to treating the symptoms of GERD.
- The TIF procedure’s incisionless approach means that patients are left with no scars of any kind after surgery.
- Since there is no cutting in the TIF procedure, patients are able to recover quickly.
- The TIF procedure has fewer negative side effects compared to Nissen fundoplication.
- It’s possible to revise the procedure should that become necessary to control GERD symptoms.
Patients are often able to return to their regular activities just a few days after surgery with the TIF procedure. Its excellent clinical results, safety profile, and superior recovery time make the TIF procedure a great choice for anyone who wants to control their GERD symptoms without dependence on medications.