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A Modified Technique to Create a Standardized Floppy Nissen Fundoplication Without a Bougie.

INTRODUCTION: Nissen fundoplication is frequently applied in the surgical treatment of patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). When the gastroesophageal junction remains too large or becomes too narrow, persistent GERD or dysphagia may occur. To assure a correct size of the gastroesophageal junction, the fundoplication can be created over a bougie. However, this increases the risk of esophageal perforation. Therefore, we have modified a previously described technique to create a standardized fundoplication without the use of a bougie. In this article, we describe this technique and demonstrate the initial results.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We describe a technique to create a standardized Nissen fundoplication. After suture repair of the hiatal hernia, three marking sutures were placed on the gastric fundus, based on an equilateral triangle. The size of this triangle determines the final diameter of the fundoplication. With these measurements, we assure sufficient patency, minimize rotation, and create a more reproducible fundoplication that may reduce postoperative dysphagia.

RESULTS: We have operated 15 patients according to this technique. Mean operative time was 69.5 (SD 8.4) minutes, no complications occurred. There was no early dysphagia and the mean length of stay was 1.3 days (1-2). Quality of life after 1 year was excellent.

CONCLUSIONS: This modified method for standardized Nissen fundoplication is safe and might reduce postoperative dysphagia. Quality of life after 1 year is excellent. The effect on postoperative dysphagia and the reproducibility of this technique should be established in a large prospective study.

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