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Reflux Surgery Shows Success

October 18, 2005|From Reuters

CHICAGO — A type of surgery to treat acid reflux disease, a chronic cause of heartburn, is showing a high degree of long-term success, according to a study published Monday.

Of 1,340 people who underwent a laparoscopic procedure, in which a small tube is inserted into the abdomen, 93% said they were satisfied with the long-term results.

Patients in the study, conducted at University Hospital in Angers, France, were followed on average for more than seven years after the surgery.

Acid reflux disease occurs when stomach acid moves into the esophagus, usually because of the failure of a muscular valve meant to prevent such leakage.

Laparoscopic surgery for acid reflux involves strengthening that natural barrier by wrapping part of the stomach around the lower part of the esophagus.

Nearly 10% of the patients resumed taking heartburn medicine, but "in most no evidence of reflux recurrence could be found," said the study, published in the October issue of the Archives of Surgery.

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