Seven Years Post-Nissen... Having Intense Stomach Pains Again

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Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 11/30/2012 5:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello all.

I had a Laproscopic Nissen 7 years ago to correct a hiatal hernia. I was twenty one then, and it was absolutely ruining my life. Anyway—surgery done, problem solved.

Then, about two years ago, I started having unusual stomach issues. I was seeing a doctor here about it, and he kept prescribing me different pills (mostly PPI’s), but never came to any strong conclusions or a diagnosis. I’ve recently moved onto a new doctor after an expensive, painful, and ultimately useless run with the previous one, but I’m finding that I’m he’s not much more proactive beyond “tinkering” around with small notions about what to do.

My symptoms typically last for a few weeks and then switch off for a few weeks. They generally include:

-An intense gas-like sensation  around my stomach/lower chest as if I need to burp. Sometimes I can manage a burp, but it never feels like enough.

-A tight muscle cramping sensation just an inch or two below and to the left of my sternum.

-Pain behind my left ribs about halfway between my sternum area and my sides.

-An occasional debilitating nausea.

I’ve tried dietary changes (gluten-free, lactose-free, non-gas-causing foods), PPI’s, and a few other pills. There’s little rhyme or reason as to when it will start or how long it’ll last, but when it strikes, it becomes the focus of my day, generally lingering for a couple weeks at a time.

They’ve done some tests, but nothing supremely conclusive has come up. The barium swallow either produced no results or mostly negligible results, depending on which doctor’s interpretation. The endoscopies (I’ve had three so far) had the doctor briefly thinking it was eosinophilic esophagitis, but he later said otherwise, concluding that maybe my esophagus is just “like that” or whatever. I asked if the wrap was still intact, and he said he didn’t think it needed to be redone.


I’m at a complete loss as to what I can do from here on out. The doctors don’t seem to be doing anything that helps. A surgeon I went to for a second opinion suggested I consider a dilation, but neither doctor took a shining to this suggestion for some reason. Also, neither doctor wants me to get another nissen (neither do I), but I can’t really endure this for too much longer.

Has anyone had this happen before? What should I look into, and what possible actions could one take?

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7181
   Posted 11/30/2012 8:48 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi J.K.,
Welcome to the Healing Well yeah yeah yeah Wrapped Club! yeah yeah yeah Sorry to hear you're having so many problems.  There are times when GI docs and surgeons, though they mean well, don't seem to truly understand the significance of the pain and problems we are experiencing when we go to see them.
It seems that they've left you few options. You can either seek out yet another opinion locally, or travel to a center where they deal with more problem cases.  I don't really have any answers, but do encourage you to keep looking for help.  Don't give up.  There's an answer for you, and you will feel well again.
A moderator here, Bill, had a lot of problems with his first wrap.  His docs didn't know what was wrong with it.  Finally they just went in to fix it, although they didn't know if there was even anything wrong.  It ended up to have been made incorrectly, which explained his problems.  I'm just relaying this story to say that problems can't always to be discerned from the outside.
Hang in there,
and Good Luck!
GERD/Heartburn Moderator
Nissen Fundoplication 2/09

"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

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 12/5/2012 10:10 AM (GMT -6)   
Out of curiosity, is there any site that lists the types of failures in Nissen Funcoplications, or more specifically, what problems happens over time if the wrap appears to be at least superficially functional?

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 12/5/2012 10:13 PM (GMT -6)   
Got to agree with Denise. If you are able to, go to a teaching hospital that specializes it this. It took me almost 3 years to find out what was wrong with mine and ended up having to go to Loyola Medical Center specialist. After the 11 dilatations here and 2 there they finally saw something weird on my 3rd barium swallow and decided to do an exploratory to see what was causing it.

It is very possible your wrap has loosened or something like that over the years. Most info I have says 10 years, but some last longer and some less.

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