Hill Repair...Success So Far

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Bureaucrat
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 4/15/2012 8:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Note: moved from Hill Repair vs. Fundoplication

Hello all,

Thought I would post my results of my laproscopic, Hill Repair two weeks post-op. My surgery was with Dr. Aye in Seattle (I traveled from Wisconsin). Outstanding surgeon and, as most of you know, a prominent leader in the technique (in addition to many other surgeries he performs). I am 52yo, male with LPR. I've had a history of strictures - 6 to be exact - all requiring dilations. Twelve years of taking PPI's has resulted in osteopenia and the medication itself was becoming ineffective. No Barretts esophagus, but I have a family history (my father).

I cannot say whether my experience with the surgery is typical or not, but I fared very well. I used painkillers immediately after surgery but after I was discharged one day later, I only had mild discomfort not what i would call "pain." I did not use oxycodone (which I wanted to avoid because of possible nausea) or even tylenol for that matter. Liquids went down easily and I have good motility so swallowing has not been a major problem though I do have to go much slower. I'm on soft, mushy foods for four weeks and then can begin with solids. I've lost about 4 pounds...I could actually stand to lose about five more to get to my BMI. So, I don't mind losing the weight. I had issues with heavy mucous after meals having LPR which has disappeared completely. No coughing or gagging anymore!

I went with the Hill Repair because it seemed to mimic the natural anatomy and functional aspects of the esophagus better than the Nissen and I am hoping for less complications. But that was just my choice. I'm not necessarily anti-Nissen because there are many people who have also had good, if not equal outcomes who went with the Nissen. It just didn't sound like the route that I wanted to go. I also had considerable confidence in the Hill Repair because of Dr. Aye's experience with it and the longitudinal study that was recently published (Dr. Aye was one of the co-investigators).

It has only been two weeks so far, so it is still early. But, so far a very positive outcome for me. I'll check in to let people know of my progress. Best of luck to everyone!!

Post Edited (Bureaucrat) : 4/15/2012 7:34:28 PM (GMT-6)


dencha
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 4/16/2012 3:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Bureaucrat,
Happy to see you've moved your post out into the daylight.  I'm glad you found a great surgeon to do the procedure you selected.
 
I don't think I ever even considered a Hill repair, and went with the Nissen, as that's what was recommended by my GI doc.  My reflux was only in the high normal range whenever it was tested, and I think he wanted the added protection, as my lungs were very badly affected by whatever reflux I was having.  Who knows?
 
Anyway, it's great that you're posting, so others who are looking for answers and information will be able to learn more about the Hill repair.
 
Hope you're having a great day! 
Denise turn

M8
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2012
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 10/6/2012 7:41 PM (GMT -6)   
Has anyone heard from Bureaucrat?

AriJIN
New Member


Date Joined May 2013
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 5/15/2013 11:16 AM (GMT -6)   
I am scheduled for the Hill repair in July. I have read some posts about folks having terrible after-surgery pain and complications. I am an older woman, in good health, except for the long-term GERDS which has resulted in Barretts (with no dysphasia ..sp?). The gastric motility study showed normal for liquids, but only moderate for the soft food. After reading the horror stories, I am getting frightened. Has anyone out there been in my general condition and had GOOD results? I am in the Northwest, so yes, using one of the doctors here.

dencha
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 5/15/2013 1:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi AriJIN,
Welcome to Healing Well!  I had the Nissen (full wrap) in February 2009.  I've had great results, and generally most do.  There are complications that can occur with any surgery, but if you've located a good surgeon who is highly experienced in doing the Nissen procedure you'll do fine. 
 
I'm 61, and had my surgery at 57.  Others here had the surgery in their 60's and even 70's with great success.  I have recently written my feelings about the surgery and the false assumptions of widespread failures that can occur when checking the internet.  Most don't ever post, and those who do are generally having problems of some kind.  Here's a link to the discussion.  Mine is the second post:
 
Here's a link to my early recovery journal:
Hopefully it'll provide you with some information you will find helpful.
Glad you've joined us!
Denise

GERD/Heartburn Moderator
Nissen Fundoplication 2/09
Allergy/Asthma

"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.”
Eckhart Tolle

AriJIN
New Member


Date Joined May 2013
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 5/15/2013 1:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you, Denise...
I was told that the Nissan wasn't as good an option for me as the Hill would be.  And that I was lucky to live in the Northwest where a couple of the highest rated 'Hill" surgeons practice.  However, I was already warned by the surgeon that there would be a lot of pain, and weeks of not being able to eat solid foods.  However, that didn't bother me as much as the stories folks are telling about months and months of pain and then ending up in the emergency room, or having to the esphogas stretched because the surgery was too tight. 
 
I'm glad your Nissan surgery went well.  And I know you're right about the fact that we don't hear as much from the people who have successful outcomes; it's when there are problems that folks tend to write.
 
None-the-less, I'm hoping to hear from a few folks who've had the Hill surgery and are not only satisfied, but who haven't had to suffer for weeks on end afterwards. 
 
AriJIN 

AriJIN
New Member


Date Joined May 2013
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 5/15/2013 2:12 PM (GMT -6)   
wondering how Bureaucrat is doing now, a year or so after his surgery. does anyone know?

dencha
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 5/15/2013 4:01 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi AriJIN,
Joy (couchtater) had the Hill procedure done about 3+ years ago.  She still posts sometimes.  She had a great outcome without any real issues.  You could use the search engine in the upper right hand corner of this page and search for her or other Hill repair responses.
 
By the way, my full Nissen did not cause me bloating, my pain was minimal, and I was eating normal, well-chewed foods (small quantities and only foods that could be chewed to a creamy consistency) on Day 5 or 6.  My surgeon was very liberal about eating procedures, an it worked fine for me.  My teeth were my blender, and I enjoyed that greatly.  He warned me off untoasted bread, sandwiches, and steak.  Basically, he left it up to my good judgment.
 
I think you're generalizing the pain and difficulties to all Nissens/Hill repairs.  Check out posts by recently wrapped, Retired Seabee.  There are many positive posts about surprisingly comfortable recoveries.  Everyone is different, of course, an your recovery will be unique to you.
 
Good luck,
Denise
PS The recovery from a full Nissen wrap and a Hill procedure are very similar, so any recovery experience you read about regarding a Nissen, you can expect pretty much the same experience after the Hill...only difference is that there's less of a chance of doing it too tight, which can cause problems.
GERD/Heartburn Moderator
Nissen Fundoplication 2/09
Allergy/Asthma

"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.”
Eckhart Tolle

Bureaucrat
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 6/19/2013 10:46 PM (GMT -6)   
AriJIN said...
wondering how Bureaucrat is doing now, a year or so after his surgery. does anyone know?

I'm very sorry for being so delinquent in not giving an update. It has been over a year, and I am really doing fantastic!! No heartburn, no issues with mucous after eating. I eat pretty much whatever I want to! I have noticed that I cannot eat large meals or drink too much beer without getting bloated which is actually a healthy thing. I shouldn't be stuffing myself and eating fast like I used to. I've been off PPIs since the surgery which I'm grateful for having developed osteopenia which was probably the result of taking those pills. I've been exercising and doing the Dukan diet and lost 12 pounds which places me right at my proper BMI for my height. Life is good!!

Maybe too much information here but I was worried before having the surgery about increased flatulence and that has increased somewhat but it is not like I'm expelling all the time and being offensive. smilewinkgrin Just a little more gas after I eat a larger meal. Dr. Aye made the sphincter of my lower esophagus fairly tight so it is rare for me to belch which my spouse probably likes. turn

AriJIN- about the pain. It probably varies by individual but in my case , I had very little pain in the hospital (I was well medicated) and I didn't use oxycodone. They gave me a huge bottle of it which I ended up throwing away. I was pretty weak for about 7 days after the surgery, and did quite a bit of walking to gain my strength back. But honestly, the whole experience was not as difficult as I thought it might be. For what I gained in quality-of-life, any discomfort that I had was short-lived and worth going through.

So in summary, the surgery has improved my life considerably and would encourage anyone to explore the Hill Repair option. Dr. Aye is great! Not only as as a surgeon/clinician but a good egg too. If I were to need any thoracic surgery and was able to, I would fly to Seattle again to see Dr. Aye in a heartbeat

AriJIN - good luck with your surgery in July!!

opnwhl4
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 6/20/2013 11:53 AM (GMT -6)   
Bureaucrat

Never to much info on this forum! It's great to hear the surgery is working so well.

Don't be a stranger and hang around some. We have a lot of new members who have so many questions and those of us who have been through it can help them through the rough times.

Take care,
Bill
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn
Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 on 8/24/11

AriJIN
New Member


Date Joined May 2013
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 6/20/2013 11:55 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for responding ... I am feeling a bit better about the surgery.  I think that when I met with the
doctor, the information scared me.  My Gastro-doctor had told me that this was a one-day procedure, but the
surgeon says I will be in the hospital at least 2 days because it is major surgery.  He also stressed how much pain
I would be in. 
So, thank you very much for the positive story.  I hope that my doctor is as good as Dr. Aye was for you.  Mine has
a great reputation here in the South Sound;  and my gastro guy said that he was who he would have himself if he ever needed the Hill procedure.  Keeping my fingers crossed.  I've rescheduled my surgery from July to August. But I will post here, how my recovery goes.    

Bureaucrat
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 6/20/2013 8:56 PM (GMT -6)   
AriJIN said...
Thanks for responding ... I am feeling a bit better about the surgery. I think that when I met with thedoctor, the information scared me. My Gastro-doctor had told me that this was a one-day procedure, but the
surgeon says I will be in the hospital at least 2 days because it is major surgery. He also stressed how much pain
I would be in.
So, thank you very much for the positive story. I hope that my doctor is as good as Dr. Aye was for you. Mine has
a great reputation here in the South Sound; and my gastro guy said that he was who he would have himself if he ever needed the Hill procedure. Keeping my fingers crossed. I've rescheduled my surgery from July to August. But I will post here, how my recovery goes.

Sounds like you are in very good hands. You are lucky to have great surgeons out there in the Northwest. Many different options for you. I look forward to hearing about how the surgery went and your recovery. Take care.

Bureaucrat
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 6/20/2013 9:02 PM (GMT -6)   
opnwhl4 said...
Bureaucrat

Never to much info on this forum! It's great to hear the surgery is working so well.

Don't be a stranger and hang around some. We have a lot of new members who have so many questions and those of us who have been through it can help them through the rough times.

Take care,
Bill


I'll try to be better about sharing what knowledge I have as well as my experience. I know though that everyone can be different in terms of the type of reflux/medical conditions that they have, what treatment they choose, and how they respond to treatment. But if I can add some value, I would be more than happy to.
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