Fundoplication is the standard surgical treatment for GERD. Usually a specific type of this procedure, called Nissen fundoplication, is performed. The Nissen fundoplication is considered the “gold standard” for controlling reflux and repairing hiatal hernias. It is the technique by which all other pro-cedures are judged. During the Nissen fundoplication, the hiatal hernia is repaired and the upper part of the stomach is wrapped around the LES to strengthen the sphincter, preventing acid reflux. The Nissen fundoplication is typically performed with minimally invasive surgical techniques (laparoscopic surgery). During a laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication small cameras and instruments are utilized to perform the repair through very small incisions. The small incisions greatly reduce the post-operative pain and allow for a much faster recovery. When performed by experienced surgeons laparoscopic fundoplication is safe and effective in people of all ages, including infants.
Most people can leave the hospital after an overnight stay and return to work in 1 to 2 weeks. More importantly, because the reflux is controlled, medications for GERD are usually no longer needed for most patients.
A “Robotic” Nissen Fundoplication is identical to a laparoscopic Nissen with respect to the actual operative steps. It may offer some advantage in some cases for the operating surgeon with respect to improved vision and dissection.