Laparoscopic fundoplication, often referred to as ‘Nissen fundoplication’ is the most common form of anti-reflux surgery in the UK today. It involves wrapping the upper part of the stomach (fundus) around the oesophagus and stitching it in place (plication). This creates a one way valve that enables food and drink to be swallowed but prevents stomach contents from ‘refluxing’ back the other way.
There are several variations of the fundoplication depending on how far around the oesophagus the stomach is wrapped and in which direction it is wrapped. The most common types of fundoplication are the Nissen (360 degree posterior), Lind (300 degree posterior) and Toupet (270 degree posterior). Your surgeon will explain the best option for you together with the pros and cons for each.
The fundoplication is an excellent procedure for combatting the symptoms of acid reflux, and you can expect very good outcomes when you have your sugery in a high volume centre with an experienced fundoplication surgeon. This is a procedure where judgement is required by the surgeon on how tight the wrap should be so outcomes can vary significantly. At The Reflux Centre we only work with fundoplication surgeons who perform the procedure both privately and in the NHS.
Our results are based on a number of studies on fundoplication patients at the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust including one long term study by our consultant surgeons Mr Super and Mr Singal. The results compare favourably with the best centres in the UK and beyond. For details, view scientific references.
- 2.3% of patients were readmitted to hospital within 30 days due to their surgery
- Only 1.7% of patients required re-do surgery within 12 months
- Over 95% of fundoplication patients reported that their reflux symptoms were significantly improved,
- Over 90% of patients said they would have the same procedure again
- Over 85% of cases were completed as day cases
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What are the complications/side effects with a fundoplication?
Although there are risks and potential complications / side effects for all surgical procedures, the majority of studies into anti-reflux surgery show zero incidence.
What is the recovery period ?
We recommend that fundoplication patients plan to take a minimum of 1 week of work. This is sufficient for most patients.
How long will I be in hospital ?
Over 85% of fundoplication patients are listed as day cases so you can expect to be admitted to hospital in the morning, have your operation later on in the morning and to be discharged to go home late afternoon/early evening.
What is the post operative diet ?
The post operative diet is liquids for 2 days, followed by sloppy food for a week and then another 2 weeks of soft foods. At about 4 weeks after your fundoplication operation we would expect you to resume a normal diet of solid foods.
Will I be able to belch/vomit ?
It’s impossible to say because it depends on the tightness of the wrap once you have recovered from the surgery and any swelling has settled. In most cases however, patients do say they have difficulty in belching. This is precisely because the purpose of the fundoplication procedure is to create a one way valve. In most cases the symptoms can be managed by changing eating habits so that less air is swallowed when eating.