Peroral endoscopic myotomy (POEM) is a minimally invasive endosurgical procedure to treat achalasia, a condition that describes poor relaxation of your lower esophageal sphincter (LES).
Your LES is a muscular ring that closes off your esophagus from your stomach. Having achalasia means this ring won’t open when you’re swallowing fluids or food, resulting in food backing up in your esophagus when you eat. This can cause:
You may need POEM if you have spastic esophageal disorders that fail to respond to other medical therapies.
The team at Interventional Endoscopy Associates PLLC also performs G-POEM procedures, an endoscopic surgery to treat gastroparesis, a paralysis of the stomach that doesn’t allow food to move through properly.
During a peroral endoscopic myotomy, your Interventional Endoscopy Associates PLLC provider uses endoscopy to create a small tunnel underneath the lining of your esophagus.
They insert specialized tools through the endoscope to release, or cut (myotomy), the inner muscle layer of your lower esophageal sphincter. This release relieves esophageal pressures and makes it easy for food to pass through.
The endoscope’s attached camera sends real-time images of your inner esophageal structures to an external monitor your surgeon watches throughout the surgery.
These images ensure your physician can operate with a high level of precision. Following the release of your LES, your provider closes the incision with staples.
POEM surgery can take 2-3 hours, and your provider at Interventional Endoscopy Associates PLLC administers general anesthesia to keep you asleep and pain-free throughout the procedure.
After your surgery, you will need to recover from the anesthesia before moving to a regular hospital room to complete your recovery. Your physician will prescribe a course of antibiotics to prevent infection.
You won’t be able to eat until the following morning and must undergo an X-ray to ensure your POEM procedure was successful. When you can drink liquids and eat a soft diet, you can expect to receive your discharge to go home.
Once at home, you need to follow a liquid diet for about a week. You should be able to resume your usual routine soon after based on your physician’s recommendations.
To find out if you’re a candidate for POEM, call Interventional Endoscopy Associates PLLC or book an appointment online today.