Does previous endoscopic treatment affect the outcome of laparoscopic Heller myotomy?

L. Bonavina, R. Incarbone, M. Reitano, L. Antoniazzi, A. Peracchia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Study aim: Aim of this study was to assess symptomatic and objective outcome in patients undergoing laparoscopic Heller myotomy after unsuccessful endoscopic treatment, compared to patients having primary surgery. Patients and method: Between November 1992 and December 1998, 92 patients with esophageal achalasia underwent laparoscopic Heller myotomy and Dor fundoplication. Intraoperative endoscopy was routinely performed. Sixty patients had primary surgery (PS); 32 patients had surgery after unsuccessful pneumatic dilatation (PD) (n=22), or botulinum toxin (Botox) injection (n=10). Results: The mean operative time and the incidence of postoperative dysphagia were similar in the two groups. The incidence of intraoperative mucosal tears was 5% in the PS group and 12.5% in the PD/Botox group (P=NS). Mucosal tears occurred more frequently during the first 30 operations (17% vs 3.2%, P <0.05). Median follow-up was 28 months (range 4-76). An abnormal esophageal acid exposure was documented in 2 patients in the PS group (7.7%), and in two patients in the PD/Botox group (13.3%) (P=NS). Lower esophageal sphincter pressure significantly decreased in both groups (P <0.01). The mean percentage of radionuclide residual activity in the esophagus at 1 and 10 minutes significantly decreased in both groups (P <0.01). Conclusion: There is only a trend, although not statistically significant, towards an increased risk of complications and adverse effects in patients previously treated by PD and/or Botox. The higher incidence of mucosal tears during the first 30 operations suggests the effect of the learning curve. (C) 2000 Editions scientifiques et medicales Elsevier SAS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45-49
Number of pages5
JournalAnnales de Chirurgie
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2000


  • Achalasia
  • Botulinum toxin
  • Laparoscopic Heller myotomy
  • Pneumatic dilatation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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