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J Gastrointest Surg. 2008 Mar;12(3):510-7. Epub 2007 Dec 11.

Use of antireflux medication after antireflux surgery.

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  • 1Flinders University Department of Surgery, Flinders Medical Centre, Bedford Park, South Australia, 5042, Australia.



It is claimed that a substantial number of patients who undergo antireflux surgery use antireflux medication postoperatively. This study was aimed to determine the prevalence and underlying reasons for antireflux medication usage in patients after surgery.


A questionnaire on the usage of antireflux medication was sent to 1,008 patients identified from a prospective database of patients who had undergone a laparoscopic antireflux procedure.


A total of 844 patients (84%) returned the questionnaire. Mean follow-up was 5.9 years after surgery. A single or combination of medications was being taken by 312 patients (37%): 82% proton pump inhibitors, 9% H2-blockers and 34% antacids. Fifty-two patients (17%) had never stopped taking medication, whereas 260 patients (83%) restarted medication at a mean of 2.5 years after surgery. Return of the same (31%) or different (49%) symptoms were the commonest reasons for taking medication, whereas 20% were asymptomatic or had other reasons for medication use. Postoperative 24-hour pH studies were abnormal in 16/61 patients (26%) on medication and in 5/78 patients (6%) not taking medication.


Antireflux medication is frequently taken by many patients for various symptoms after antireflux surgery. Symptomatic patients should be properly investigated before antireflux medications are prescribed.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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