JOURNAL ARTICLE

Long-term outcome of peroral endoscopic myotomy for esophageal achalasia in patients with previous Heller myotomy

Helle Ø Kristensen, Jakob Kirkegård, Daniel Willy Kjær, Frank Viborg Mortensen, Rastislav Kunda, Niels Christian Bjerregaard
Surgical Endoscopy 2017, 31 (6): 2596-2601
27699518

BACKGROUND: Peroral endoscopic myotomy (POEM) is an emerging procedure in the treatment of esophageal achalasia, a primary motility disorder. However, the long-term outcome of POEM in patients, who have previously undergone a Heller myotomy, is unknown.

METHODS: Using a local database, we identified patients with esophageal achalasia, who underwent POEM. We compared patients with a previous Heller myotomy to those, who had received none or only non-surgical therapy prior to the POEM procedure. We conducted follow-up examinations at 3, 12, and 24 months following the procedure.

RESULTS: We included 66 consecutive patients undergoing POEM for achalasia, of which 14 (21.2 %) had undergone a prior Heller myotomy. In both groups, the preoperative Eckardt score was 7. Postoperatively, the non-Heller group experienced a more pronounced symptom relief at both 3-, 12-, and 24-month follow-up compared with the Heller group, and there was a tendency for the effect of POEM to reduce over time. We suggest that there is a correlation between preoperative measurements of gastroesophageal sphincter pressures and the chance of a successful POEM.

CONCLUSIONS: POEM has a place in the treatment of esophageal achalasia in patients with a prior Heller myotomy and persistent symptoms as it is a safe procedure with acceptable long-term results.

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