Fundoplication surgery What will I be able to eat?

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New Member

Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 3/10/2012 12:03 PM (GMT -6)   
I am having Fundoplication surgery on Tuesday March 13th. I was told to eat smooth things. But what I would like to know what types of food is everyone having the best luck with. I read on the forum about chicken broth. But what else should I being buying? I am also glad that I found this Forum, since I didn't know not to use a straw? I am a 59 year old man. Just trying to be prepared.
Thanks everyone for all the great info, I have been reading here.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7181
   Posted 3/10/2012 1:11 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Jim,
Welcome to Healing Well!  I'm glad that you found us, and have found the posts here informative. 
I had the surgery 3 years ago, and in case you haven't come across my recovery journal, here's the link.
It might provide you with some of the information you're seeking.  Also, in the Resources section you can find this link:
It provides some helpful information regarding eating.
Every surgeon seems to have their own eating protocol.  Many require liquids and soft foods for an extended period of time.  I assumed mine would be like that, so I gathered and created homemade chicken broth, squash, applesauce, etc., and bought Carnation Instant Breakfast. 
As it turns out, I used very little of what I'd gathered, because my surgeon had a much more liberal eating protocol.  I was on liquids my one day in the hospital, then came home on soft foods.
At Day 6 he turned me loose to use my own judgement and my chewing abilities to eat "whatever could be chewed to a liquid."  In that way, my mouth became my blender/food processor.  I ate small bites and chewed, chewed, chewed thoroughly until it was a smooth consistency of a full-liquid diet.
I found this very satisfying, as chewing real foods was more enjoyable to me than eating blended food.  That said, had my surgeon given me a different protocol I would have followed that.
A couple things that you may or may not have gleaned here:
Your wrap will become increasingly more swollen during the first couple weeks or so.  Expect your swallowing to get worse before it gets better. 
Stay away from iced drinks after surgery, as they can cause esophageal spasms while you're healing.  Room temp or warm beverages are better.
Be sure to ask your surgeon or PCP for anti-nausea drugs and always keep them handy (always after surgery--even post-healing) because while some of us can vomit after a Nissen, vomiting or retching can harm your wrap.
Get some liquid Tylenol to use once you're feeling better and don't need the narcotic meds any more.  Those narcotic pain meds will probably be needed at night longer, but you won't need them as long during the day.
If you have other questions, ask away!
Best wishes!

New Member

Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 3/10/2012 2:36 PM (GMT -6)   

Thank you so very much, and yes I found your Journal very helpful, I would like to say thank you so very much for taking the time to keep it and posting it. I also found the link to MushyDiet very helpful. Just reading this puts my mind at ease. My Doctor never said anything about the swallowing being worse after a short time after surgery, but at the same time to be fair, I'm sure he will when the time comes. Everyong has been telling that he is a very good surgeon. This of course makes me feel a lot better also. He has told me that I will be in the hospital any where from three days to seven, of course depending on which way he has to do the surgery.
I am sure I will be having more quetions after the surgery.
Thank you, Jim

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 513
   Posted 3/10/2012 3:33 PM (GMT -6)   

I am coming up on my one year anniversary of having the Nissen Fundoplication, April 1, 2012 will be 1 year that I regained my life and began living again. I am soon to be 63 and still working.

Please listen to what your surgeon tells you, my surgeon was the best in my area and he is an amazing doctor, but he had no clue what the actual recovery from the Nissen was. This is not to say he was not thorough. He was a great surgeon. He has not been through this and he couldn't come close to advising on anything but full liquids (cream of wheat, yogurt, pureed soups, applesauce,things like that) until the beginning of the 3rd week, then soft foods and meats.. soft past, mashed potatoes and gravy, well cooked vegetables... then add as you can tolerate. My first meats/fish were ground beef, broiled.baked fish, well cooked chicken, I found that the dark meat was best because it stays more moist than the white meat and it is easier to chew to a liquid. He did not go into detail on the gas, the 'dumping syndrome', backing up and doing soft foods for a few days if you happen to irritate your wrap, thing like that.
I will be forever grateful for this forum and the wonderful people here. Kitt, Denise,Joy and Bill along with a whole lot of other caring members from all over the world have been my saviors when it came to my frustrations, my triumphs and just plain old "I am tired of this" whining. They have all been here for me in ups and downs. We will be here for you too if you want us beside you. Please stay with us and ask questions voice your fears or your accomplishments and we will be here for you.

Always remember.... Reach for the Sunshine... Rainbows will follow...
Sandi smurf tongue turn smurf turn

New Member

Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 3/10/2012 3:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you very much, Sandi.
I am the half full type of person. I beleave in thinking positively.
But the more I know the better I feel. I even went an watch a video showing how it is done. One of my coworkers, stated there was no way he would watch it if he was having it done, like I said I like to know what is happening, good or bad. I will stay in touch, and thanks for your support.

New Member

Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 3/12/2012 1:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Can anyone tell me how long does this surgery usally take. I am one day away from getting it done. I should have asked my Doc, but you know how that is?

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 3/12/2012 6:15 PM (GMT -6)   
Mine took 2 hrs, and they had a lot to do because most of stomach was where it didn't belong. I kept forgetting to ask too, and had to wait until next day to find out how long it took.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7181
   Posted 3/12/2012 6:56 PM (GMT -6)   
My surgeon said it would take 3 hours, but my husband said it actually was less than 2. It really depends on what they find when they get in there. When the hernia is huge or the stomach has moved into the chest it takes longer.
Words of wisdom by Eckhart Tolle:
"Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”

“Worry pretends to be necessary but serves no useful purpose”

“Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”

New Member

Date Joined Feb 2012
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 3/15/2012 7:12 PM (GMT -6)   
I had Nissen on Monday March 12th and was home the next day. The first two days I ate broth, jello, lemon ice, water and apple juice.
Here are some other foods that I have had no trouble with:
-Beef, chicken or veggie broth - Swanson 100% Natural tastes pretty good
-Malt-o-meal cereal with 2% milk and a sprinkle of sugar
-Protein shake made with: 4 oz milk, 1/2 packet of Carnation Instant breakfast and 1/2 scoop of GNC unflavored 100% whey protein
-Skinny Cow frozen fudge bars
-Betty Crocker microwavable instant mashed potatoes with Heinz Homestyle gravy
-Snack Pack fat free tapioca pudding
-Any kind of baby food
-apple sauce and apple butter
-White grape juice and apple juice
-Jello and pudding
-Herbal teas
It is important to eat very small portions and do not have liquids until you finish. So far, I do not eat more than 4 ounces at a sitting. The GNC protein powder is great because you can mix it with anything or sprinkle it -- it is possible to get your daily requirement of protein early on in recovery. I think some people run into trouble by eating the wrong things or too much. I honestly have not had the sensation of hunger since my surgery but I am careful to get those 4 ounces in every 3 hours or so. I also sip on water between meals. I have not had any discomfort with eating, no nausea, no stomach distension. I still do not eat anything that previously gave me heartburn (spicy, greasy, citrus). BTW I've lost 3 pounds since surgery.
I wish you good health and hope your experience turns out as positively as mine has. All the best!
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