Myotomy: follow-up study of 50 patients.
Laparoscopic myotomy has become the standard treatment for definitive management of achalasia. This study was undertaken to assess the long-term results of the procedure. Perioperative data, including a symptom score questionnaire, were collected prospectively on all patients undergoing laparoscopic myotomy. The same questionnaire was readministered by phone to patients with follow-up greater than 3.75 years. The long-term success of myotomy was defined as a 50% or greater decrease in the dysphagia score and absence of further therapy (responders). Fifty of 95 patients (age = 57 years, 23 females) were successfully contacted. Average follow-up was 6.2 years. The overall long-term success rate was 64% (responders). Forty-two patients (84%) were able to gain or maintain their weight after the procedure. Five patients (10%) required one or more endoscopic dilations after the myotomy. The mean change in dysphagia score was higher in the responder group (7.8 +/- 1.9 vs. 1.9 +/- 2.1; P = 0.001). The two groups were similar in terms of age, gender distribution, and follow-up interval (P > .05). Dor fundoplication was performed in six patients (12%), and the outcome comparisons of these patients showed no significant differences from those patients undergoing Heller alone. Overall satisfaction was achieved in 94% of contacted patients. These results confirm that laparoscopic myotomy is an effective procedure with excellent long-term symptom resolution and overall satisfaction in patients with achalasia.
Berch, BR; Nava, RD; Torquati, A; Sharp, KW; Richards, WO
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