Evaluation and management of patients with symptoms after anti-reflux surgery

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Over the past two decades, there has been an increase in the number of anti-reflux operations being performed. This is mostly due to the use of laparoscopic techniques, the increasing prevalence of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) in the population, and the increasing unwillingness of patients to take acid suppressive medications for life. Laparoscopic fundoplication is now widely available in both academic and community hospitals, has a limited length of stay and postoperative recovery time, and is associated with excellent outcomes in carefully selected patients. Although the operation has low mortality and postoperative morbidity, it is associated with late postoperative complications, such as gas bloat syndrome, dysphagia, diarrhea, and recurrent GERD symptoms. This review summarizes the diagnostic evaluation and appropriate management of such postoperative complications. If a reoperation is needed, it should be performed by experienced foregut surgeons.

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