Do I really need the HH repair?

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bandwife
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/3/2012 1:23 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi, a brand newbie here. I searched the topics and didn't find one from someone wondering whether to go through with the fundo surgery, as my doctor advises. I don't have heartburn and never did. I had an EGD and Bravo because of an ongoing coughing thing: saliva seems to come back up on me and causes choking and coughing. Sometimes when I'm eating the food doesn't want to go down and causes a little choking and coughing too. I had a cyst removed from my vocal cord last year, and people seem to hear me better now. But evidently coughing has not subsided and is a little abusive to the larynx, I guess. My Bravo test came back with super low acid levels and so I have stopped taking any ppi's, which was the whole reason I wanted the EGD and Bravo. I didn't want to have to take that medication forever. So I'm happy with that outcome. But the EGD showed I have a HH, ulcers and signs of non-acid reflux.

I have the surgery scheduled but am thinking about cancelling. It just doesn't seem serious enough compared to what most people here have gone through. My symptoms are a nuisance but I'm not convinced I am in any danger. I've been reading a lot of about post-operative issues that sometimes don't go away after recovery is over: not being able to belch when needed, increased flatulence (6 out of 10 patients never improve!?), bloat, feeling full but still feeling hungry. I am 48 and heading toward the land of menopause. I don't want these post fundo problems added to an already distasteful roster of bodily symptoms. Really. I'm depressed about how my body is changing and if I add more farting and bloating to the list I will probably never go out again!

Your input is appreciated.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 10/3/2012 1:36 PM (GMT -6)   
It sounds like you definately need the HH repaired.
If you're refluxing then you need to fix that too.

Is he doing a full wrap or a partial wrap?

The tooting and bloat does not last long. :)
Joy
Lupus, Fibromyalgia, Glaucoma, Asthma, Hypothyriodism, Sleep Apnea, Degenerative Disk and Facet Disease, and Allergies

When life throws you lemons....
Pick them up and throw them right back at them! :))

bandwife
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/3/2012 2:09 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks, couchtater. I don't know which kind of wrap actually. If he said it, I didn't catch it.

I appreciate your firm answer. Maybe you can tell me in that same way, what are the different risks to a person who doesn't have the repair? My surgeon said people go through their whole lives with hiatal hernia and never even know it. Yes, I know about mine and I have some symptoms, but it is not acid. So how much damage can be done so my insides? What else could happen if I don't have the surgery? A link to a trusted website would also be great.

Thanks again.

theacidrefluxman
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 739
   Posted 10/3/2012 3:38 PM (GMT -6)   
Hmmm, its tough. I'd want to know your 24 hour PH test results and Motility results before giving any advice. After all, doctors should be running those tests to see a candidates suitability. Actually, yeah you mention the low acid on the Bravo test so there you go...I am guessing that a lot of doctors would think take that into account as against the idea of surgery. Have you had a motility test?

bandwife
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/3/2012 4:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Yikes, I have not heard of a motility test, suggesting I didn't have one. So I looked it up and, as suspected, I have definitely NOT had that done.

Moonflower56
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 10/3/2012 6:03 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi newbie: I am 5 days post op so I do understand the worries. I'm curious. Did you have a barium swallow test done? That was the turning point for me. It showed my entire stomach was in chest, behind heart and upside down. Please add this to your tests to discuss with your doctor. Good luck.

bandwife
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 10/3/2012 6:51 PM (GMT -6)   
No barium swallow. Just the EGD with Bravo. It's a sliding type hernia, not at a severe stage. But I guess over time that would be the risk, that the hernia would become pretty severe if not repaired. Moonflower, did you stay over in the hospital? This has not been spelled out for me. I thought I would go home the same day (though much later).

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 10/3/2012 7:39 PM (GMT -6)   
Please insist on a Barium swallow and motility study. It wouldn't hurt to have a stomach emptying test done too.
These are vital if you are to have the surgery. The surgeon needs this information to determine which kind of wrap to do or if it is really for you.
If he claims you don't need them, then cancel the surgery with him and go to a different doctor. It's very careless of the surgeon going in with just the basic testing.

You hired him to do his best for you. You can fire him if he's not doing it.
Joy
Lupus, Fibromyalgia, Glaucoma, Asthma, Hypothyriodism, Sleep Apnea, Degenerative Disk and Facet Disease, and Allergies

When life throws you lemons....
Pick them up and throw them right back at them! :))

Moonflower56
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2012
Total Posts : 22
   Posted 10/3/2012 9:00 PM (GMT -6)   
Yes, I was in the hospital for 4 days. I did promise this group an update, but I've got to say, this knocked me for a loop. My surgery was open and overall I think I've done well. I am attempting to WALK but it's a slow go. I went back to clear foods last night after a miserable few days. Surgeons really don't give a lot of guidance on food. I do panic with every new symptom but as this group said, "surrender to the healing".

On the barium swallow (for newbie) my concern is that looking at the esophagus, and even stomach, via endoscopy, does not tell the docs if your stomach is where it should be. My gastroenterologist could not tell by the endo. It took sending me to a specialist/surgeon and he immediately ordered the barium study.

I have a lot of questions down the road for my gastro dr and my primary on why it took so long to figure this out. I had complained for 2 years of nagging abdominal pain in the upper left, extreme shortness of breath, nausea, pounding heart when lying down, and over the last 6 months episodes of what felt like major heart attacks. The elephant was in the room and no one noticed.

buzzmoz
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 52
   Posted 10/4/2012 7:33 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Bandwife
If I had minimal symptoms such as yours, I wouldn't even entertain surgery. Reflux is the primary symptom of HH and since you don't have it, then it's not a concern. The coughing is probably due to regurgitation which you maybe able to fix/decrease with diet changes, repositioning in bed, ensuring that your clothing is not too tight and indeed excess weight can be a huge issue if you happen to be carrying it.
The ulcer results sound concerning. Were you tested for Helicobacter pylori ?
I had a 180 anterior and HH repair that was successful first time. HH repair and wrap repair second time around due to weight gain, tight pants and 2 days of lifting timber was my undoing, has given me lots of grief, despite the fact that the area he worked in the second time was really good according to the surgeon. Think carefully before deciding for certain. I'm 49 and like you I too will be boarding the menopause train soon enough. Just hope they put me in the end carriage so that you can't hear me over the top of the whistle.
Good luck
Buzz

theacidrefluxman
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 739
   Posted 10/4/2012 2:25 PM (GMT -6)   
Yup, agree with Couchtater 100% - you need a motility test first. Generally the motility and 24hr PH are always run before a surgery to decide if a person is a good candidate for surgery.

I may be wrong, but it is my understanding that having an (undiagnosed) motility issue and then getting the surgery is perhaps the main reason some people come out of it with more problems than when they went in.
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