In June 2013 (6 months after surgery) I went to see Dr. Swanstrom for the scheduled 24 hour ph test, manometry and an endoscopy. Perhaps a month before I had been having that lump in your throat feeling you get when a little food is stuck in your gullet. That was the only symptom I had to report. He said everything looked fine but decided to give my esophagus a little stretch while he was in there. My swallowing has been pretty much perfect from that day forward :).
The manometry showed much better pressures which was no surprise.
The 24 hour ph test showed some "abnormal" readings when I was asleep so he has me take a 20 mg Pepcid each night before bed. I guess this means I have some reflux when I lay down. I have not asked but I assume the reason I was not aware of it is because the reflux is a small amount. There are no noticeable side effects from the Pepcid.
I went for another check up last week (endoscopy only) and Dr. Swanstrom said everything looked good. The next scheduled appointment is for the 4 year check up which would be January 2017.
Swallowing is fantastic and normal. My weight is steady between 155-160 lbs (135 lbs was my lowest before surgery). I do have the occasional very small burps and raspy throat in the morning or feel the need to clear my throat after eating but usually this is like the day after I eat a large meal before bedtime or eat a very fatty meal which I suspect would give quite a few people a little reflux as well. I am careful to chew my food thoroughly especially thick bread type foods.
I would say I have had "Heartburn" that was noticeable to me 5 times or so since my surgery. Each time it has been very brief (a couple of minutes) and I have taken care of it with a little water or a couple bites of something bland.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions you may have about any of this. The POEM surgery has definitely changed my life for the better and I would do everything exactly the same if I were to do this all over again.
Now for the fun part.
To make a very long story short, we went back to France with our kids this summer for a month and stayed with Joelle and Claude and their friends all over the country. A week in Normandy, a week in the Alps, a week with Joelle and Claude in Alsace and a week in Paris. Generous beautiful people and such a formative experience for Phoebe and Ty. Again I thank Dr. Swanstrom for the opportunity.
|Anne Marie took us to a Medieval festival in Normandy near Bayeux.|
|Hiking in the mountains above Munster in Alsace. Joelle and Claude are in the back.|
|Ty and his best French friend Eddie below Mt. Blanc in Chamonix.|
|Headed back to our friends Lauren and Joceline's house |
in Cusy France after a morning mushroom hunt.
|The cheese in France is amazing.|