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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2009 April;64(2):147-157

language: English

Laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication

Kane T. D

1 Department of Pediatric General and Thoracic Surgery
2 Department of Minimally Invasive Surgery Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA, USA


This article will focus on a review of the history and current status of laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication for gastroesophageal reflux disease in infants and children.
Methods. Review of the available current literature concerning laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication in infants and children. Information regarding the current approach for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) in children will be reviewed in addition to the indications for surgical antireflux operation; application and safety of laparoscopy; and the outcomes of laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication in both normal and neurologically impaired children. Finally, the reported data regarding the learning curve in performing the procedure and short-term and long-term complications of laparoscopic Nissen procedure will be discussed. Compared to open antireflux operations, the laparoscopic Nissen approach in infants and children is safe; durable; provides better cosmetic results; and allows for earlier institution of feedings. The established “learning curve” for safe and competent performance of laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication is from 25-50 cases. Neurologically impaired patients may indeed benefit from a minimally invasive approach to GERD and enteral access related to improvement of quality of life. Better nutrition and decreased complications related to malnutrition and a decreased incidence of aspiration pneumonia may be realized for these patients. The laparoscopic Nissen approach to GERD is well accepted and widely utilized in infants and children. Prospective randomized multi-institutional studies will be necessary to accurately determine whether this therapeutic approach to GERD in both neurologically impaired and neurologically normal children is the superior option compared to continued medical therapy or gastrojejunal feeding tube approaches to GERD.

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