Heartburn, GERD, Stretta and You

About The Procedure

The STRETTA procedure is an advanced state-of-the-art endoscopic technique for the correction of  all forms of reflux disease including: 1) esophageal reflux, known as Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease or GERD, and 2) respiratory reflux also known as Laryngopharyngeal Reflux or LPR.

The STRETTA catheter is a specially designed, FDA approved, device with a balloon and four needles. The catheter is connected to a control module, which delivers precisely monitored and controlled amounts of radio-frequency energy to the lower esophageal sphincter muscle or LES. Each needle has its own generator that carefully monitors and controls the energy so that only the correct temperature and energy is transmitted.  The energy used is only 5 watts (like an LED light) and is carefully controlled between 65-85 degrees (temperature of a cup of coffee).

 

It is the LES that is responsible for reflux.  Slowly over time this muscle weakens until it can no longer resist the normal pressure generated by the contraction of the stomach.  When this happens you have reflux that occurs.  The pressure of the LES may be normal or low, but the key is that it is relatively too weak to protect you against reflux of the stomach contents into your esophagus or throat.

 

The entire procedure consists of two parts. Initially, an upper endoscopy or EGD is performed while the patient is sedated. This allows the physician to take precise measurements of the distance from the mouth to the LES or sphincter muscle between the esophagus and stomach. After measuring the distance, the physician will then insert the STRETTA catheter, through the mouth, to the specifically measured distance. The balloon is then inflated, the needles pushed into the muscle of the sphincter, and radio-frequency energy is transmitted via the needles…….Continue reading

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