JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Angelchik prosthesis revisited.

There are few long-term follow-up reports of the Angelchik prosthesis (AP). We report the longest follow-up series (66-192 months, average 145 months) to date. Between October 1983 and January 1994, 65 patients (45 men and 20 women) aged between 29 and 84 years (mean 52 years) had an AP inserted for gastro-oesophageal reflux (GOR) with or without hiatus hernia (HH). Clinical, radiological, endoscopy, and operative details were reviewed. Postoperative complications, investigations, and follow-up details were critically analyzed. All living patients (n = 53) with an AP in situ were interviewed and symptomatic assessment was carried out using a modified Visick system (I-IV). The average duration of the GOR symptoms before the operation was 5.7 years (range 10 months to 20 years). The average hospital stay was 8 days (range 5-15 days). Postoperatively, five patients developed chest infection/atelectasis, four had superficial wound infection, two had deep vein thrombosis (one with pulmonary embolism), one had urinary retention, and four developed an incisional hernia. Six patients (three with an AP in situ) died of other medical conditions. Ten (15%) patients had removal of the prosthesis. Eight (12%) and 11 (17%) had transient and persistent dysphagia, respectively. Thirteen (20%) and five (8%) patients had distal slippage and proximal migration of the prosthesis, respectively. One patient had erosion of the AP into the stomach, while in another patient, the straps of the prosthesis ruptured. Of the 53 living patients with an AP in situ, 28 (53%) were Visick I, 11 (20%) were Visick II, 11 (20%) were Visick III, and 3 (7%) were Visick IV. We conclude that the AP has poor long-term results, with only 66% attaining Visick I and II, and a prosthesis removal rate of 15% (10/65). Patients with preoperative dysphagia, hypothyroidism, and diabetes tend to do worse with an AP. Obese patients and those with failed previous fundoplication seemed to fare well with an AP. In view of poor long-term results and high incidence of complications as compared to other conventional operations for GOR, we cannot recommend the continued use of the AP.

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