Immediately After Esophageal Surgery with LINX Device
Most of you will go to the post-anesthesia recovery room for one to three hours for close observation before being discharged home. Some of you will spend the night in the hospital if you have a lot of medical problems or a very large hiatal hernia. Many of you won’t remember much of the recovery room, which is normal. Regardless of whether you are admitted or go home the same day, we want you up and walking as soon as you are able. We also want you to work on deep breathing to expand your lungs and prevent pneumonia. The nurses will give you an incentive spirometer to help with this. It is important to tell the nurses if you are having too much pain or nausea to perform these activities, so that they can give you some medicine.
If you have a large hiatal hernia repair you may have an X-ray before advancing your diet to the next level. You will go to the radiology department where they will have you stand up and drink some liquid (Gastrografin) that shows up on the X-ray. This routine test lets us look at the surgical repair and make sure everything looks good.
A few of you will have a tiny plastic tube (drain) connected to a suction bulb after surgery. This collects extra/unwanted fluid from the surgical site and allows us to test the fluid for salivary amylase (enzyme found in saliva). This is a routine way to make sure everything is healing properly.
Nasogastric (NG) Tube
A few of you will have a nasogastric tube to decompress your stomach to relieve extreme nausea, prevent vomiting and decrease strain on stomach stitches. If needed, these tubes usually need to stay in place for the entire day after surgery.
This information has been approved by Emily Speer, MD (October 2017).