Considering Robotic Anti-Reflux Surgery? Here’s What You Should Know

NOVA Bariatrics

Reasons for Robotic Anti-Reflux Surgery

Robotic Anti-Reflux Surgery can remedy heartburn. Heartburn is a common term used to describe a number of digestive problems. Many Americans experience this sensation at least once a month. Common symptoms include a burning sensation that radiates through the chest and into the throat and neck. Other symptoms include vomiting and difficulty swallowing. In the medical world, heartburn is a symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). GERD is a condition where stomach acids reflux from the stomach into the esophagus. Food travels from the mouth to your stomach through the esophagus. The lower esophageal sphincter (LES) is the muscle at the lower end of the esophagus. The LES helps food travel from the esophagus to the stomach and should close as soon as the food has passed on to prevent back-up of stomach juices. GERD happens when the LES does not work properly. Acid burns the lower esophagus which leads to inflammation and irritation.

NOVA Bariatrics

Dr. Alibhai

With Dr. Alibhai’s training in minimally invasive and robotic surgery, he performs a wide range of general surgical procedures as well including:

  • Robotic Gallbladder surgery
  • Robotic hernia surgery
  • Acid Reflux surgery

Mustafa H. Alibhai,MD,FACS,FASMBS

Heartburn & Acid Reflux Causes

Many people experience heartburn throughout their lifetime. While there’s no one specific cause for Heartburn and GERD, there are a few contributing factors to keep in mind. The following can contribute to heartburn and acid reflux (source nhs.uk):
  • Smoking
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Stress and anxiety
  • A hiatus Hernia (include internal link to hernia blog post)
  • Medications such as ibuprofen
  • Being overweight or obese

What Makes Robotic Anti-Reflux Surgery Unique

With robotic anti-reflux surgery a large incision is made in your abdomen so doctors can reach your organs as they operate. Our innovative robotic technology helps our team operate with enhanced precision. Robotic technology allows for a faster recovery time than traditional forms of surgery. Robotic surgery may also lead to less scarring and post-surgical pain.

Who Qualifies for Robotic Anti-Reflux Surgery

At NOVA Bariatrics, we believe it’s best to commit to robotic anti-reflux surgery post weight loss surgery. Obesity could cause problems during the operation such as bleeding or dense scar tissue. Always consult your doctor before committing to any type of surgery. For those who qualify for robotic anti-reflux surgery, be prepared to change your diet and take a small break from your normal, day-to day activities. The good news is, the post-operative pain is mild and will require little to no medication. There should be no need for anti-reflux medication either. Depending on your needs, we may ask you to switch to a liquid diet before surgery then gradually move to solids after the operation. Be sure to schedule a follow-up appointment a few weeks after your operation so we can ensure that everything is copacetic. Fortunately, there are little to no long-term side effects in robotic anti-reflux surgery. Common, temporary side effects include
  • Stomach bloating
  • Limited ability to belch or vomit
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Need for endoscopic dilation

Potential complications to Robotic anti-reflux surgery include:

  • Bleeding
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Chills
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Persistent fever
  • Inability to eat or drink liquids
  • Pain not relieved by medication

Nonsurgical Treatments for Acid Reflux

If surgery is not right for you, we recommend looking into the following changes to help lower your risk of GERD:
Lifestyle changes: An unhealthy lifestyle contributes to acid reflux issues. Weight loss, eating smaller meals, and quitting smoking are excellent ways to kick acid reflux. We recommend that you do not eat within 3-4 hours before bed. Be sure to avoid food and drinks that only trigger your symptoms.
Home Remedies: There are a number of food and drink options that help reduce the acidity level in the stomach. We recommend consuming apple cider vinegar, probiotics, aloe vera juice, bananas, and peppermint. Be sure to avoid foods that can trigger acid reflux such as fried and fatty foods, coffee, carbonated beverages, spicy foods, alcohol and tobacco, etc.

NOVA Bariatrics is With You Every Step of the Way

We understand that every weight loss journey is unique. We’re here every step of the way so you can get back to what’s most important to you—stronger and healthier than ever. For many, fighting obesity can be a difficult struggle yet a very important one. Morbid Obesity puts an extraordinary amount of stress on your body which can lead to serious conditions including:
  • Diabetes
  • High Blood pressure
  • Pain and Arthritis in joints
  • Reflux Disease
  • Cancer

Over time, obesity will cause a breakdown of your body’s systems. This can lead to a deterioration in your overall health and a decrease in your life expectancy. Bariatric Surgery is a powerful tool that helps reverse and even prevent the effects of morbid obesity.

Meet Our Doctor

Dr. Mustafa Alibhai, MD, FACS, FASMBS Dr. Mustafa Alibhai is the founder of NOVA Bariatrics and Minimally Invasive Surgery in DFW. He is a board certified and fellowship trained bariatric and minimally invasive surgeon in the Dallas Fort Worth area. He is extensively trained in performing the most effective surgical and non-surgical medical weight loss procedures to date. He is especially skilled in robotic surgery which he uses to execute a wide range of general surgical procedures to give his patients the fastest & easiest recoveries possible.
Dr. Alibhai is well known among his patients and community for his thoughtful and patient approach. He firmly believes that weight loss is a journey and commits to his patients’ success by walking alongside them every step of the way. He dedicates time to help guide each patient with solutions and individualized treatments that will work best for them.