Outcome of Peroral Endoscopic Myotomy (POEM) for Treating Achalasia Compared With Laparoscopic Heller Myotomy (LHM)

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Abstract

Objective:

Peroral endoscopic myotomy (POEM) is an emerging endoscopic treatment for achalasia and the long-term efficacy of POEM remains to be evaluated. This study compared the outcomes of POEM with that of the standard laparoscopic Heller myotomy (LHM) for achalasia.

Materials and Methods:

Achalasia patients treated by POEM or LHM were retrospectively analyzed, with a minimum postoperative follow-up of 3 years. Perioperative outcomes and long-term outcomes including treatment success (Eckardt score ≤3), occurrence of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) (GerdQ score ≥9) and quality of life (36-item short form) were compared.

Results:

Thirteen patients who underwent POEM were compared with 18 patients who received LHM. These patients were similar in age, sex, symptoms duration, Eckardt score, and previous therapy (all P>0.05). Mean myotomy lengths were similar (P=0.73). Operation time was shorter in the POEM group (P=0.001). One patient (7.7%) developed pneumothorax after POEM and 1 patient (5.6%) experienced postoperative infection after LHM (P=1.00). Treatment success was achieved in 83.3% (9/12) of POEM patients and 80.0% (12/15) of LHM patients (P=1.00). Both POEM and LHM significantly reduced Eckardt score (both P=0.00). GERD rate was similar (8.3% vs. 6.7%, P=1.00). There was no difference in all aspects of quality of life between the 2 groups.

Conclusions:

Long-term outcomes indicate that POEM is an effective treatment that is comparable with LHM. More data of randomized trials comparing POEM with LHM will enrich the existing evidence.

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