I had Linx and a hiatal hernia repair about
4 weeks ago. While I am not a surgeon (and the below is NOT FORMAL MEDICAL ADVICE), I have some doctor friends and did an enormous amount of pre-surgery research. Below is what I learned, I hope that it is helpful to someone.
Preop: Hydrate well. Drink lots of water the night before and 8oz up to 2 hrs before surgery (unless your surgeon tells you otherwise).
Anesthesia: You don't want to be nauseaus after surgery and general anesthesia makes many people very nauseaus. I would recommend asking your anesthesia provider if they are comfortable with giving you a scopolomine patch and/or TIVA (pronounced tee-vuh) both will decrease the chance of nausea. Another medication they can give during surgery to lessen nausea is Decadron, but be aware that Decadron can mess with your blood sugar and (if you are like me) can make it very difficult to sleep the first night. On to constipation - it is common after surgery, so limiting opiate pain medications during surgery can help with this (and with nausea as well). You can ask your anesthesia provider if they are comfortable limiting your intraoperative opiates by administering a medication called ketamine. Ketamine isn't for everybody and can cause some bad dreams, but when given at the beginning of surgery tends not to have pronounced side effects.
Postoperative pain: Don't be afraid to ask your surgeon to put some local in your inscisions, it helped me to not have to worry about
inscisional pain until after the car ride home. For me, the worst postop pain was the shoulder pain from the gas they used during surgery. My surgeon friend said that moving around was the best way to get rid of the gas, so I made sure to get up an walk a little ever hour or so and the shoulder pain only lasted a couple of days.
Postoperative dysphagia: Eat early and often. My surgeon recommended every 30 minutes while awake. This is to decrease scar formation around the device which can be a long term problem. Dysphagia tends to start around day 7 after surgery, but if you had a hernia repair it can actually start right away (which I wish I had known ahead of time!). Before surgery, if food got stuck, I would take a big gulp of water to get it down. This does not work anymore, it actually just makes things worse and hurts like hell! For me, sips of water before and after well chewed food works best. While it is tempting, avoiding difficult-to-swallow foods is not a long term solution if you want to regain (relatively) normal swallowing. The way I'm lookng at it is that eating is physical therapy and physical therapy is going to be uncomfortable for the esophagus just like it would be for an orthopedic issue.
Last week I went back to work about
3 weeks after surgery and, even though I was up to walking a couple of miles during the time off, the first day back still kicked my butt.
Personal results: I still get reflux, but only about
30% of what it used to be and I am sleeping much better! It would be nice to have no reflux, but I have some esophageal hypersensitivity, so that would probably not be a realistic expectation.
Well, I hope the above knoledge is helpful for you and good luck!
Post Edited (Taterium) : 3/4/2018 8:14:19 AM (GMT-7)