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New Incisionless Procedure for Reflux

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Panama City, Fla. – Most of us have experienced heartburn at least once. When it happens more than once a week, it could mean you have Acid Reflux Disease.

When we eat, a valve opens from the esophagus to the stomach so food can pass through, then it closes. If that valve doesn’t work properly, contents from the stomach can reflux into the esophagus.

Colleen Denslow says, “I’ve had trouble for years, going back to childhood, with Acid Reflux and burning and heartburn.” She was taking medicine for her condition, but even the medication didn’t stop the burning completely. Then Denslow learned about the Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication or TIF procedure.

“It actually has a pretty good track record in Europe, and it’s something that’s been done within the last 2 to 3 years in the U.S.,” explains Dr. Glenn Summers. He says it’s a way to create a valve that will prevent the reflux without an incision. That’s exactly what Denslow decided to have done.

Patients are put to sleep while an endoscope is placed through the mouth.

“We are able to pull down some of the stomach and esophagus…fix it in place with these fasteners and then allow the stomach and esophagus to heal. It creates a sleeve from within,” Dr. Summers says. Dr. Summers says 80 percent of patients can go off medicines after the TIF procedure.

Denslow stayed in the hospital overnight at Bay Medical Center and was on a liquid diet for a couple of weeks. However, Denslow said she could tell a difference in how she felt almost immediately.

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