Anti-Reflux Surgery

Jeffrey Bell, MD

General Surgeon & Robotic Surgery Specialist located in Fayetteville, AR

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a chronic disease that affects 20% of Americans. Though most people can manage their GERD symptoms with medication and lifestyle modification, some people benefit from anti-reflux surgery. Jeffrey Bell, MD, in Fayetteville, Arkansas, is a board-certified general surgeon and performs anti-reflux surgery using advanced minimally invasive techniques. To schedule a consultation to discuss your GERD surgical options, call the office today.

Anti-Reflux Surgery

What is gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)?

GERD is a chronic digestive condition where acid from your stomach refluxes up into your esophagus. 

Your lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is a group of muscles found at the lower end of your esophagus. Your LES opens to allow food to pass into your stomach and then clamp shut to prevent acid from your stomach from refluxing up. 

If your LES is weak or unable to close when it should, you experience acid reflux. 

Common symptoms of GERD include:

  • Heartburn
  • Feeling of fullness 
  • Chest pain
  • Bad breath
  • Nausea or vomiting

Treatment for GERD generally includes lifestyle modification or medication.  

Who needs anti-reflux surgery?

You may need anti-reflux surgery, also called Nissen fundoplication, if you have severe GERD that fails to improve with conservative medical treatments. When left untreated, GERD increases your risk of developing esophagitis and esophageal ulcers. 

Your reflux may also cause bleeding and esophageal scarring that may affect normal function. 

What can I expect during an anti-reflux surgery consultation?

Dr. Bell is an experienced general surgeon who specializes in anti-reflux surgery, and you can expect a thorough evaluation when you come to his office for a surgical consultation. During your exam, he reviews your symptoms and current treatments.

Dr. Bell reviews your medical and surgical history and performs a physical exam. He may also request diagnostic imaging, such as an endoscopy, MRI, CT scan, or X-ray to evaluate your esophagus and stomach.

After your consultation, he determines if you’re a candidate for anti-reflux surgery and develops your personalized surgical plan. 

How is anti-reflux surgery performed?

Dr. Bell develops personalized anti-reflux surgical plans based on the severity of your GERD and your medical and surgical history. When possible, Dr. Bell performs your anti-reflux surgery using minimally invasive techniques, including robotic surgery with the innovative da Vinci® surgical system.

During your anti-reflux surgery, Dr. Bell wraps and secures the top portion of your stomach around your esophagus, which adds pressure to the lower end of your esophagus to reduce acid reflux.

Dr. Bell performs your anti-reflux surgery under general anesthesia and sends most patients home the same day after monitoring in the recovery room. However, in some cases, Dr. Bell may require you to stay at the hospital after surgery. 

Though recovery times vary, most patients return to their usual activities within 2-3 weeks.

To learn more about anti-reflux surgery and how it may benefit you, contact the office of Jeffery Bell, MD, by phone today.