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New Member

Date Joined May 2012
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/12/2012 6:23 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi All,
I had Nissen Fundoplication surgery this past Tuesday (5/8/12) and was released the next day.  Reading through the message boards has been great, both pre and post op.  I just thought I'd share some of my own experience on the surgery and where I'm at thus far;
I personally think the gas pain was worse than the incision pain that first day.  Just taking a deep breath in was a struggle.  My husband could feel the "bubbles" when he rubbed my neck/shoulder area for me.
I was able to belch immediately.  I thought this unusual since I had read so many comments from those who cannot, but I did so right after drinking some water shortly after the surgery. 
I was sent home with liquid pain medication.  I used it regularly the first 2 days and only used it at bedtime last night, nothing today.  I may eat clear and some soft foods (cream of wheat, strained cream soups).  I really don't find myself hungry and have stuck to broths, jello and greek yogurt for the most part.
No BM yet but am very gassy.  I have been walking quite a bit as the medical staff says it helps.  I also find that walking just helps me feel better in general, less stiff and my legs appreciate it as well.
My doctor took away my PPI, wants me to heal without it.  Acid reflux wise I do not feel the way I did prior to the surgery for the most part but do have some slight resembling symptoms; chest pain(like a chest cold) and some pain in the higher portion of my throat but the "lump feeling" is gone.  I do feel like coughing sometimes though.
I have my first follow up visit Monday the 14th.  I would appreciate any feedback/comments letting me know that I sound "normal" and on the right track to recovery.  I am also willing to answer any questions. I know using the internet can be good and bad when searching for answers but in this day and age it's such an easy place to turn to. 

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 656
   Posted 5/13/2012 1:50 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi TJ,

Firstly, welcome to HealingWell. I'm so glad that our forums have helped you and given you good advice already :) This is a great place to turn to for answers!

Secondly, congratulations on your Nissen!

I can tell you right away that I have not had the surgery, but I have had other surgeries and that's what the urge to cough/chest "sorenesss" sound like normal post-op to me. I am sure that some of our "wrapped" members will be along shortly to give you some more advice.

If you don't mind, what symptoms did you experience before surgery and what testing did you undergo to determine you were a candidate? I'm hoping for surgery myself if it's indicated.

Take care,

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2012
Total Posts : 121
   Posted 5/13/2012 2:03 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Tj
Following my Nissen I had absolutely no appetite for about 4 weeks and really just forced myself to eat, I also stopped ppi straight away and did not notice any issues associated with this, as for pain it was as you say not at site of cuts but in chest and stomach. I felt bad in a way that was difficult to explain but not really I'll just washed out for a few weeks. As for eating, I used to swallow whilst looking up so it would gurgle down and this was very noisy. I also had ver bad throat for just over a week with my cracker being very swollen and used to rest on the back of my tongue, all of this however sorted itself out within 10 days. I just took it easy for a while and stuck to liquid and ver soft foods such as ready brek and stewed mushed apple with custard. All i have left to say is good luck it gets better.

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2012
Total Posts : 121
   Posted 5/13/2012 2:04 AM (GMT -6)   
My spell check changes clacker to cracker - centre dangling bit between tonsils

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 5/13/2012 10:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi tj,
Welcome to the Healing Well yeah yeah yeah Wrapped Club! yeah yeah yeah Like Ashley, I'm glad that the posts here helped you along.  I had my surgery 3 years ago, and had the same great experience with the forum, which is why I stayed to help out.  There aren't many places on the internet to find the kind of information and support that is available here.
It sounds as if what you're experiencing is perfectly normal. A lot of the pain you're feeling in the chest area is a direct result of the surgical assult that is invisible to your eyes.  Although your outsides don't look like major surgery, be assured that your insides do.  People around here remind each other that it takes a full 6 months for the majority of the healing and a year for the rest. 
Try to surrender to your recovery and let it lead you.  If you can avoid stressing and a desire to hurry things along you'll have a much easier experience.  It is what it is.  Just go with the flow, and you'll do just fine.  Listen to your stomach/body and follw its lead.  It has a right to complain, so baby it along.
I remember before my surgery I couldn't understand all the talk of shoulder pain.  It just didn't make sense!  However, it's a combination of referred pain from the nerves that were irritated in the diaphram area, and the gas bubbles that are flying around as a result of the surgeon's "blowing up your stomach like a balloon" so that he/she could have a clear field of vision. 
Walk, walk, walk.  Whenever you can, get up and walk around the house, or outdoors if the weather is nice.  Of course you'll be taking it very easy in the beginning.  If you're anything like me, your shoulder pain will reduce in exact relation to the amount of walking you do.  Believe me, I remember that pain well.  It was worse than the incisions for me, too.
Glad you've joined the forum!
Best wishes for a speedy and uneventful recovery...
Happy healing!
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.”

Post Edited (dencha) : 5/13/2012 9:48:32 AM (GMT-6)

New Member

Date Joined May 2012
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/14/2012 11:30 AM (GMT -6)   
Went to my post op today. Guess I'm normal, lol! Another week of mush and then we get to start CAREFULLY testing foods. I was surprised he wants me to try things so soon after reading on here how long everyone waits to eat "real" food after surgery. ??? Prior to my next appointment he wants me to experiment with small amounts of food and see what happens. He did stress to take very small bites and not to eat alot of them. I'm a little confused by the conflictions between one course of recovery and another but I guess I'll attempt the doctor's orders and go from there. I so appreciate everyone's input on here! Just because a doctor performs a surgery does not mean that they have personally had the experience so it's really nice to get information from those also going through it.
Ashley, I was on various PPI's for about 10 years. I had been experiencing heart burn but after refluxing acid at night I knew something had to be done. I could feel then burn from my stomach up my chest but the "lump" feeling in my throat had me concerned. The choking feeling was the absolute worst to me though. I had never really heard of acid reflux or GERD. The town I lived in at the time did not have a GI doctor so in the month it took me to get into see one in another town I kept a journal. After meeting him I underwent no further testing. He read my journal and diagnosed me stating there was no reason to "torture" me with other tests. So began my pill a day. In the beginning I liked Protonix the best but had to switch due to insurance reasons to Nexium. After moving 3 years ago for my husbands job I started experimenting with generics such as omemprazole. We are on a high deductible health plan and the Nexium was $175 for a month supply.
Starting last summer I began having these flare ups where my pill would not work. I'd go to 2 a day which worked until a few months which everything seemed to stop working. My husband and I began researching the surgery for a number of reasons; concern over taking these pills the rest of my life, financial cost and my feelings in general over the situation. I'm 40 years old and I just hated the thought of taking these pills the rest of my life and decided that a shot at a "few good years" without medication was worth it to me.
My barium swallow x-rays showed no reflux (go figure, gotta love it when you know you're not crazy but a little medical test makes you feel that way). My endoscopy showed otherwise of course though. The esophageal manometry was my last test prior to surgery. For me, this test SUCKED! I did not go into it thinking it was going to be a fun experience...just not quite that bad. I know some people probably wouldn't consider it that bad but for me it couldn't have been over fast enough. :)
After going over the results of my tests and learning that I was actually a good candidate for the surgery I pretty much "jumped in". That's my story! Tomorrow will be 1 week so I guess only time will tell....

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 127
   Posted 5/14/2012 2:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello tj1971,

I am happy to hear you are on the other side of the surgery. I have not had the surgery but in time I may consider a surgical fix to this. I am 30 and developed GERD suddenly one day in April last year after never having heartburn in my life. I read that you took PPI's for 10 years...did they give you pretty good symptom relief for most of those 10 years? Was it just at the end that they began to fail? I understand you not wanting to take the meds for the rest of your life...that's me as well. I hope the Nissen surgery is the answer for you. I have read many posts on this forum of people for whom the surgery has been a miracle.
i always like to know how active one was prior to surgery and also post-op. What did your doc say about activity and lifting post-operatively? Also, did your doc take you off of your PPI's completely?

Take care,
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