GERD affects an estimated 1 in 20 people in the United States. In people
with GERD, the normal barrier between the esophagus and stomach does not
function properly. Normally, this barrier allows food and liquid to pass
down into the stomach but prevents the stomach contents from flowing
back up (refluxing). People with GERD have a chronic problem of stomach
acid and other digestive juices refluxing into the esophagus.
Chronic reflux causes many bothersome symptoms, the most common being
heartburn and regurgitation of food or sour liquid. Other symptoms can
include problems or discomfort when swallowing, hoarseness, sore throat,
asthma, and chest pain.
Uncontrolled GERD can cause serious health problems. Over time,
digestive juices can injure the lining of the esophagus, leading to
strictures (narrowing), ulcers,
or a condition called Barrett’s
esophagus. People with Barrett’s esophagus have an increased risk of
developing a form of esophageal
GERD is a lifelong condition. However, symptoms often improve and can be
controlled with a combination of lifestyle modifications and medications
that reduce stomach acid.
If symptoms are not well managed with these measures or if medication
side effects or risks are a problem, Lankenau Medical Center offers two
minimally invasive procedures that have proved effective for relieving
Laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication is a type of
surgery performed using a laparoscope and tiny incisions. During
the procedure, the upper part of the stomach (fundus) is wrapped
around the lower esophagus, tightening the antireflux barrier.
Transoral incisionless fundoplication (TIF) is a
procedure performed without any incisions. A device is advanced
endoscopically to the point where the esophagus and stomach meet, and
plastic sutures are used to tighten the antireflux barrier. Learn
For more information, call 1.866.CALL.MLH.