Less is more: cruroplasty alone is sufficient for revisional hiatal hernia surgery.

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Surgical endoscopy


BACKGROUND: Recurrence of hiatal hernia after anti-reflux surgery is common, with past studies reporting recurrence rates of 10-15%. Most patients experience relief from GERD symptoms following initial repair; however, those suffering from recurrence can have symptoms severe enough to warrant another operation. Although the standard of care is to revise the fundoplication or convert to magnetic sphincter augmentation (MSA) in addition to redo cruroplasty, it stands to reason that with an intact fundoplication, a repeat cruroplasty is all that is necessary to alleviate the patients' symptoms. In other words, only fix that which is broken.

METHODS: A retrospective review of patients with symptomatic hiatal hernia recurrence who underwent reoperation between January 2011 and September 2018 was conducted. Patients who received revisional cruroplasty alone were compared with cruroplasty plus some other revision (fundoplication revision, or takedown and MSA placement). Demographics, operative details, and postoperative outcomes were collected.

RESULTS: There were 73 patients identified. Median time to recurrence after the first procedure was 3.7 (1.9-8.2) years. Thirty-two percent of the patients had GERD symptoms for more than 10 years. Twenty-six patients underwent cruroplasty only. Forty-seven patients underwent cruroplasty plus fundoplication revision. There were no significant differences in operative times (2.4 h cruroplasty alone, 2.8 h full revision, p = 0.75) or postoperative complications between the two groups. Patients had a mean follow-up time of 1.64 years. Of the 73 patients, 8 had subsequent hiatal hernia recurrence. The recurrence rate for patients with cruroplasty alone was 11%, and the recurrence rate for the full revision group was 12% (p = 1.00).

CONCLUSION: Leaving an intact fundoplication alone at the time of revisional surgery did not adversely affect surgical outcomes. This data suggests a role for hernia-only repair for recurrent hiatal hernias.

Clinical Institute

Digestive Health