Post-bariatric surgery hiatal hernias are associated with a cluster of symptoms, including bloating (nausea/vomiting or fullness), abdominal pain, regurgitation, and food intolerance or dysphagia (BARF).
To report the short-term outcomes of repairing post-bariatric surgery hiatal hernias in patients with BARF.
Large, multispecialty group practice with university affiliation.
We reviewed the records of all consecutive patients who underwent repair of post-bariatric surgery hiatal hernias (2012-2020). Data are shown as means ± standard deviations.
We repaired hiatal hernias in 52 patients (age, 57 ± 10 yr), 4 ± 3 years post sleeve gastrectomy (SG; n = 27), 11 ± 6 years following Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB; n = 24), and 11 years post duodenal switch with SG (DS-SG; n = 1). Diagnoses were made by upper gastrointestinal contrast study (80%), computed tomography (70%), and/or endoscopy (56%). Hernias in patients with SG were repaired by a posterior cruroplasty after reducing the neo-stomach into the abdomen (n = 11 SG patients; n = 1 DS-SG patient) or converting the SG to RYGB (n = 16). All 24 RYGB patients underwent hernia repair similarly. At 12 ± 10 months of follow-up, dysphagia or regurgitation improved in >80% of patients; nausea, vomiting, or abdominal pain improved in 70% of patients; and heartburn persisted in 56% of patients. Subsequent recurrent hernias that required operative repair developed in 3 patients.
Hiatal hernias containing the neo-stomach present earlier after SG than RYGB. The diagnosis can be made with a combination of imaging studies and endoscopy. Repair of post-bariatric surgery hiatal hernias markedly improves symptoms of BARF in most patients.