Laparoscopic fundoplication is a keyhole procedure performed for patients with severe acid reflux, Barrett’s oesophagus and symptomatic hiatus hernias that no longer respond to medication. It is done to prevent acid from the stomach travelling the wrong way into the oesophagus. The operation is predominantly laparoscopic although very occasionally, conversion to open surgery may be necessary.
The procedure involves narrowing the defect through which the oesophagus passes into the stomach (called the hiatus) as well as wrapping the upper part of the stomach around the lower oesophagus (the wrap) to recreate the valve at the lower end of the oesophagus. The wrap itself may be complete or partial depending on the circumstances. The operation takes about 1.5 to 2 hours and is carried out under general anaesthesia.
Overnight hospital stay is to be expected, although some patients can go home on the same day. There are restrictions to food intake for the first few weeks after the operation. Sloppy and pureed food is advised for 6 weeks following the operation. Bread and meat are likely to cause the most trouble and are to be avoided. Dietary advice will be provided before you go home. Anti acid medication can be stopped immediately after the procedure.