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TIF Procedure Resolves Roberta’s Reflux

TIF Procedure Resolves Roberta’s Reflux

In 2007, Roberta Conrad had such severe indigestion and chest pain that she ended up in the hospital. After ruling out a heart issue, the Mohrsville resident was given proton pump inhibitor (PPI) medication for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and sent home. Conrad tried four different PPIs, but each eventually stopped working. “I’d take the medication at 8 a.m., and it was supposed to last 12 hours, but by 1 p.m., it was so bad that I would get indigestion from something as bland as a banana or from bending over to tie a student’s shoe,” says the 63-year-old assistant elementary school nurse.

In June 2018, after meeting with Shashin Shah, MD, Director of Endoscopy at Eastern Pennsylvania Gastroenterology and Liver Specialists, and Scott Beman, MD, with LVPG General, Bariatric and Trauma Surgery, Conrad had the TIF procedure, which treats GERD at its source.

What is TIF?

“TIF is a minimally invasive procedure to reconstruct the LES,” Beman says. Performed under general anesthesia, TIF uses a special device to restore normal function of the LES, often times with no internal cutting. “The best candidates for TIF are patients suffering from GERD who regularly experience troublesome symptoms, but who no longer respond to or aren’t satisfied with pharmaceutical therapies,” Shah says.

Since then, Conrad has been GERD-free. “The day I had TIF is probably the happiest day of my life,” she says. Conrad stopped taking PPIs and can eat anything without experiencing GERD symptoms.

In fact, eight weeks after her TIF procedure, Conrad traveled to Zimbabwe for two weeks with her family and enjoyed spicy local cuisine. “I tested TIF well, and I didn’t have any problems with reflux or food,” Conrad says. “It was an amazing trip.”

Acid Reflux Surgery

Chronic heartburn symptoms from acid reflux disease (also called gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD) are hard on your body. When medications and lifestyle changes aren’t enough to manage the condition, surgery may help. We offer surgical options to effectively treat this condition.

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