BACKGROUND: Open antireflux surgery is an established long-term treatment for chronic gastroesophageal reflux disease. Short-term results of laparoscopic antireflux surgery are excellent, but long-term follow-up is not yet available. METHODS: Twenty-four-hour ambulatory esophageal pH monitoring and symptom scores were collected prior to laparoscopic antireflux surgery and 6 weeks postoperatively. These studies were repeated in an unselected cohort of patients 1 to 3 years after operation. RESULTS: One hundred patients who were >1 year from surgery at the time of the present study volunteered for intermediate follow-up symptom assessment, and 35 also completed repeat 24-hour monitoring. The median interval after surgery among these volunteers was 17 months. Thirty-three (94%) had a normal pH study, which correlated with improvements in symptom scores. One patient had an abnormal pH study but no reflux symptoms, and 1 patient with an abnormal study developed recurrent symptoms of reflux after an episode of vomiting 11 months postoperatively. CONCLUSIONS: The intermediate-term results of laparoscopic fundoplication suggest that long-term efficacy of this operation will be equivalent to open fundoplication.
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