Had the LINX device this weekend

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gazbiker
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Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 1/30/2012 1:41 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Guys

After years of reflux I opted for the LINX device and had the operation this weekend just gone.

I know a few subscribers on this website have had the LINX and wondered how much pain they had under their breastbone post surgery?

I knew that I would have some problems swallowing but I have this pain coming and going and sometimes quite severe and wondered whether other LINX patients experienced this pain?

Maybe I'm expecting too much? The op was literally 48 hours ago and I suppose my oesphagus is going to be pretty angry at the moment?

Any help would be appreciated.

cheers

Gazbiker

Raj2011
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Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 1/30/2012 1:55 PM (GMT -6)   

Hello,

Can u tell in which country did u had the LINX installed ?  Have u talked to the doctor who installed linx, about this pain....Does the pain happen when u are swallowing or is this random ?

I really hope your symptoms resolve soon and u are on your way to a happy recovery !!

Raj

 


gazbiker
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Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 1/30/2012 3:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Raj

I had the LINX in the UK, I will probably speak to the consultant tomorrow. I do have pain when I swallow and for sometime afterwards but I also get the pain in waves without eating. Hopefully things will settle down but I was hoping other people with the LINX fitted will share their experiences with me.

Thanks for the reply.

Gazbiker

Chuck T
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 143
   Posted 1/30/2012 4:21 PM (GMT -6)   
I know another poster named Slicer complained of some throat pain after his procedure. Not sure if he was refering to the same thing. That being said, his resolved in a few days, and he is doing very well reflux wise since his procedure. TIFWIW.

Raj2011
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Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 1/30/2012 4:22 PM (GMT -6)   
I am sure u will hear from other linx users soon on this board. How about other GERD symptoms....heartburn etc ? Have they eased up ?
Raj

gazbiker
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Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 1/31/2012 2:27 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Guys

The pain I've got is at the bottom of the esophagus and is very similiar in nature to the heartburn pain I've had in the past. I've kept taking my PPI's for the time being until things settle down with the op but to be honest with you I don't know whether this pain is reflux or the distruption caused by the LINX?

I'm still burping quite a bit and when I do that increases the pain at the base of the esophagus.

I think that my esophagus is still tender with the LINX around it and until that settles down I can assess what benefits I have acheived in respect of the reflux symptoms.

Look forward to other LINX users input.

Gazbiker

Beargirl
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 2/2/2012 8:48 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Gazbiker,

Sorry to hear you're suffering after your Linx op. I had mine 7 months ago, also in the U.K. & although I had all sorts of uncomfortable side effects for the first few weeks, everything did eventually settle down. I must admit that I didn't experience a sore throat, but I did have quite a lot of discomfort around the base of the oesophagus/under the breastbone. I still get this & it all seems to be due to stomach wind.

I really have had to train myself to eat smaller portions more often, & to eat & chew slowly - hard when you've had a lifetime of eating 3 meals a day & not snacking!! If I forget & eat too much, too quickly I know about it!!

Ring the contact numbers you have & talk to them. I can only tell you my experience; hopefully someone else will have reported something similar & they will be able to advise you.

I really hope things settle down for you very soon. It did take a while for me & things aren't perfect, but I'm glad I had the op & any downsides are made up for by the huge improvements in other ways.

Take care

speedygerd
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 87
   Posted 2/2/2012 9:26 AM (GMT -6)   
Beargirl-

Are you off of PPI's and able to eat whatever you like without acid reflux? Despite the side effects has the Linx been good at resolving those issues?

Thanks for sharing.

gazbiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 2/2/2012 12:24 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Beargirl

Thanks for your input.

Most of the "operational" pain has died down but I've got this pain at the base of my esophagus which I agree seems to be painful with wind. It hurts when I eat and it hurts when I get bubbles of wind trying to come back up! I am eating slower, chewing more and sipping water with food which does seem to help. I hope that the pain does subside so that I almost do not notice it if you know what I mean.

I've just cut my PPI dosage by half so it's going to be interesting whether the "wind " will get better or worse?

At the end of the day i know that there is a trade off between this pain I am now experiencing versus nasty reflux!

I'll keep you guys posted as things progress.

Cheers

Gazbiker

Beargirl
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 2/3/2012 8:06 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Guys,

Speedygerd, - I wasn't on PPI's as I couldn't tolerate the side effects. I was struggling along with high doses of Ranitidine, lots of super thick Gaviscon & ant-acids. I no longer take the Gaviscon, but do take some Ranitidine each day as my stomach often seems to feel full of acid.

With regard to reflux; I do get it sometimes, but I think it's due to the stomach wind. Sometimes the force of the wind coming out brings up a little reflux. It can be like I'm blowing the wind out & I move paper on occasions!!! Only on a bad day does it feel acidic.

Food can still be an issue. I've given up on most red meat unless it's minced as my stomach just doesn't seem to like it & it causes me even more painful wind & nausea. I avoid pulses too & anything that is an obvious wind producer. However I can eat most other things, including (mild) curry & small amounts of chocolate(Hurrah!!) I can also enjoy a glass of wine without any problems - well except for the resulting hangover cos my tolerance for alcohol is now pathetically low!!!

I have bad days where nothing seems to suit my system, but overall I sleep better (& flat again) my exercise routine is good, & mostly I feel pretty good.

Gazbiker - I take Simethicone to help with the wind. It's available in Windsettlers & Windeeze gel capsules. Moving around seems to help shift it & sometimes a couple of ant-acids seem to help bring it up. Gripe water is also worth a try. Oddly, the time I don't notice any discomfort is when I'm actually eating food!!

It took about 5 weeks before all my post-op symptoms really settled down so don't give up. Hopefully yours will settle down much more quickly as you seem to have fewer than I did. (don't ask about the rest, we'll discuss them if they happen!!)

Keep doing what you're doing & I'm sure you'll start to feel better soon.

Take care

gazbiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 2/3/2012 9:30 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Beargirl

I had a frightening moment today. I got a bit cocky and decided to eat a chicken sandwich. I haven't eaten bread since the operation so it was the first time. Anyway, I cant remember how big a bite I took or how long I chewed, all I know is that it got stuck and I got this tremendous pain under my breastbone through to my back, I tried drinking some water but it wouldn't go down and then suddenly I had to be sick! That didn't clear it or ease the symptoms so I'm panicking now, I got the missus to slap my back hard, my eyes were watering and then a second puke up. I tried calming down but it was pretty scarey. I again tried sipping some water and slowly but surely things started to return to "normal".

This has put me off eating bread! about an hour later I tried eating the chicken and after chewing it to a pulp I managed to eat it.

I beginning to wonder what the hell I've let myself in for! Did you experience this? and if you did how did you cope and what's the strategy going forward?

cheers

Gazbiker

Beargirl
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 2/4/2012 5:00 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Gazbiker,

Poor you, that's horrible!! Yes, been there done that....... I too went though 3/4 weeks thinking they'd put a gastric band in instead of the Linx!! I couldn't seem to eat very much at all without feeling awful. It sounds like dysphagia but I really would advise you ring the clinic & tell them your experiences. The pain was probably a combination of things so soon after the op. I had a lot of oesophageal spasms & was advised to try Buscopan. Ignore that it says for IBS on the box as it's an anti-spasmodic. It does help, as does the paracetamol & ibuprofen if you're ok with either of those.

I was eating a lot of soft food for the first few weeks, although I could tolerate small pieces of toast & thin sandwiches - just ham & a bit of mayo. My understanding is that it's not uncommon for Linx patients to have initial problems with bread & chicken, but that it eases as your system adjusts to the device.

I found eating very small amounts of food regularly was helpful. Your system really does have to adjust to having this foreign body in such an awkward place & the more you force it to open & close, the quicker it will settle down. I kept a sports bottle of water by my side so I could constantly take small sips of water - as well as my usual hot drinks. I also had a lot of things like Muller Rice Pots as they went down easily & gave me the calories. Soup was good & things like mince & mash.Fish went down o.k.too. I was sometimes eating little amounts 9/10 times a day.

I know exactly how you feel at the moment & honestly it WILL get better. Patience is not my strong point, but I learned some over those first few weeks!!

Also don't worry too much if you drop a few pounds. I did & then suddenly it stopped & I was able to eat more quantity & variety.

They really should put us all in touch with each other at the Clinic shouldn't they?? I wish I'd had me to talk to after my op!! Thank goodness for sites like this.

Stay positive & keep in touch. I'll be thinking of you.

gazbiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 2/4/2012 9:42 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks Beargirl

I agree, a LINX club should be encouraged!

At the moment I am feeling a bit cheesed off and wondering whether I've done the right thing? Like you I'm not very patient and I just want things to get back to normal so I can munch on a burger or something. At the moment soup, pasta, mashed potato, fish and mashed veg seems the only food I can eat. I'm not getting pain between meals now only when I eat. The first few swallows are a nightmare with pain at the base of my esophagus which goes through to my back, I'm beginning to wonder whether they made the ring too small!

My only consulation is that having halved my PPI's I still haven't had any reflux which is a result!

I'm hanging on your words at the moment that everything is going to get better, It's nice to know I'm not alone with this and that with time I'll change my mind and accept that I made the right decision.

I'll give the guys at the clinic a call on Monday and let them know I cannot swallow at the moment and see whether they can give me any further advise.

Cheers

Gary

Beargirl
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 2/5/2012 6:50 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Gary,

They won't have made the ring too small, honestly just keep going with the boring diet & it will start to improve. Maybe treat yourself to some chocolate or anything that will melt down easily & you can wash it through with a drink!!

You'll get to the burger honest - I just can't tell you exactly when!! Trouble is, no 2 people seem to react exactly the same way to the Linx. Most of us seem to come out the other side feeling better tho'.

The other thing is the clinic sells the product, so obviously they're going to market it as a mini miracle. They tell us about what they know, but it's too new a procedure for them to know everything & we're the best people to supply that info.

I'm sure they will ease your mind when you ring them. Try & stay positive & keep eating!!!

Stay warm - been really cold hasn't it!!

Jan

Jesper A
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 2/5/2012 12:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Gary,
Your episode sounds exactly like mine. I had a Nissen Fundo 8th of November and from my day 11 post and the following 4 weeks I had daily episodes like this. My second episode actually lasted 1½ hour and I had to go to the ER.
3 minutes before I saw the doc it passed :)
This “complication” is actually very normal with the NF op, because the stomach reaches peak swelling at around 2 weeks and only slowly settles the following weeks. Of course I don’t know if that is the same with the Linx but here is what I found to make the food pass better:
1. Eat extremely slowly in the beginning of the meal (like small bite, chew chew chew * many, swallow, wait for at least a minute). when you feel food is starting to pass through to the stomach you can up the tempo.
2. Don’t take a bite of food and then wash it down with water. I actually made a point out of not drinking anything while eating which seemed to help me.
3. When it gets stuck, find a place where you can sit alone and focus on relaxing your whole body. When you relax your esophagus will begin to work with you getting the stuff down.
4. When you gulp up stuff spit it out, don’t try to swallow it again

Again I don’t know if this is normal with Linx, but for NF this something a lot of people experience but it will go away when the swelling subsides

gazbiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 2/6/2012 5:02 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Jesper

Thanks for the info, it does sound like we had the same experience which wasn't very nice.

I'm on a steep learning curve at the moment and so far I have found that simple water is hard to swallow! it just seems to build up in front of the Linx device and I presume when there is enough pressure the LINX expands and allows the fluid through but the build up is very uncomfortable!

I agree, at meal times I have to "get over" the initial pain of dysphagia, wait for it too ease and then slowly build up the tempo with eating. Bread absolutely scares the life out of me, it's just too dry and after my last experience with bread I am steering clear.

Breakfast with plenty of milk seems to work OK as does hot liquids such as tea. Last night it took me 45 minutes to eat my meal! The missus almost went to sleep waiting for me to finish! so if we're going out I had better alllow about 1 hour for meal times!

At the moment I feel that I have got rid of Reflux but introduced a new demon! hopefully things will settle down and I will learn to live with this new set of rules.

I'll keep you guys posted with progress.

regards

Gaz

Kenpo_Miguel
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2011
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/6/2012 8:17 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Gazbiker


I have a 18 years old, I am from Mexico.


I am very interested in the LINX System, but I do not want the fundoplication, and i have a question, you have a hiatal hernia? and, how old are you?


Sorry for asking so many questions, I'm somewhat nervous about this procedure.

I do not speak much English.

Get well soon

gazbiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 2/7/2012 2:24 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello Kenpo

I did not have a Hiatal hernia but I understand that they will carry out the LINX if the hernia is no larger than 2cm?

I am 50 years old and have had reflux for approx 20 years.

Good luck for the future, I hope you sort things out.

regards

Gaz

NNCanada
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 17
   Posted 2/7/2012 4:43 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi gazbiker,
 
Did they tell you the Hiatal Hernia requirement before?  I know this was a requirement for the study but I wonder why it may still be a requirement for regular surgeries since a Hiatal Hernia can be repaired as part of the surgery.
 
 

gazbiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 2/8/2012 2:36 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi NN

You have to undergo a strict set of tests before they will consider you for the LINX device. The main criteria is whether your De Meester score is high enough to warrant the surgery. They will obviously be looking for any hernia because this could have a bearing on the success of the device. If the Hiatas is too big they will not do the surgery, in this case a NP may be the better choice because the NP is more constructive surgery. The LINX is about minimal distruption to your anatomy so starting to fix a Hiatas Hernia is not really in their remit. You need to go to your local clinic, have the tests and then once armed with all the information you and they can make a judgement from there.

hope that helps!

Gaz

gazbiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 2/8/2012 2:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Guys

Sorry, I meant NF (Nissen Fundiplication) in my last post, still a bit dopy after all this time!

gaz

Grandior
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2012
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/8/2012 7:31 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello Guys,

I had my Linx surgery about 1 week ago, and I would like to compare my experience with you.
Before surgery I assumed daily esomeprazole 80mg, after I was discharged from the hospital the docs have reduced the dose to 20 mg of pantoprazole daily. After the first few days of discomfort when swallowing, discomfort is now almost disappeared. I swallow almost normally, and the thing that worries me a bit is that I can belch normally, sometimes expelling large quantities of gas. In the morning I wake up with a vague sense of acidity. The doctors say I have to wait a few weeks before evaluating the effectiveness of the device. Have any of you ever been of the feeling as if the bracelet was not tight enough, at least in the early periods?
Or, could it be moved from the position in which it was implanted?

Thanks to all

gazbiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 2/8/2012 7:49 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Grandior

Your post just shows how everyone is different with their experience of the LINX device. I had my surgery 10 days ago and I am still having a lot if discomfort swallowing where you have no discomfort after only 1 week. I was orginally on 20mg of omeprazole daily and now my dose is 10mg which I intend to stop maybe in a couple of weeks.

If anything I feel that my device is too tight and again you feel completely different in that you feel that your is too loose, but this is how our individual bodies feel after the LINX has been fitted.

I am able to belch which is a good thing as this releases the pressure in your stomach and you should be happy you can belch.

I do have a sense of slight irritation at the base of my esophagus and I am not sure whether this is down to post operative swelling or whether it is acid irritation on the stomach side of the LINX. I know that when I have managed to eat something this sensation goes away.

I think once the device has been implanted it cannot move because when they do the surgery they create a small hole in the membrane which anchors the LINX in place.

Good luck with your LINX and I hope everthing settles down for you in the future.

Gaz

gazbiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 2/14/2012 4:48 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Beargirl

Can you email me? regarding the LINX.

Cheers

Gaz

gaviscon
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2012
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 2/20/2012 2:11 PM (GMT -6)   
hi gazbiker

Its about a week since your last posting.....are things easing at all?

I am considering this device myself after twenty years of acid indigestion.

I will be following your posts as I am keen to know how things go for you.


gaviscon
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