POEM SURGERY

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I'm  74 and am scheduled to have POEM surgery in 3 weeks. Don't mind admitting I am afraid. I also have late stage COPD and sleep apnea. My first concern is my pulmonary function while under anesthetic but am also wondering if the outcome will give me enough relief to make it worth the surgery. That is probably up to ones individual case. Have confidence in my Surgeon (Cleveland OH) who trained under the original POEM Surgeon from Japan. Guess what I'd like to know is how much of an improvement did you have after surgery from as many of you as possible. Thank You in advance. confused

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  • Posted

    95% improvement. I can eat almost everything. Sleeping elevated and eating small meals more often sucks but pre-POEM was way worse. For me, POEM was definitely worth it. Best would be not having Achalasia at all but of course, that is not an option. Good luck.
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  • Posted

    Hi. Nothing to fear. They monitor your your oxygen level at all times during surgery so if you run low they'll just crank the O 2 level. In fact you'll be breathing better than normal when you're under. I had my POEM done by Dr. Inoue (the Japanese guy) and feel great ever since. Anyone who trained under him is cream of the crop. I am a single mom and I was crapping my pants before the procedure too. Totally normal. You'll love the outcome. Just say a big prayer and everything will be alright. :-)

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  • Posted

    I've had issues with anesthesia due to sleep apnea (trouble waking up, released then ended up in ER), which was the main reason I delayed my surgery for almost 3 years.  I was so nervous I did a will and living will.  I talked to the doctor and he said not to worry because they monito you and keep you over night.  This made me feel a little better but while I was waiting to go into surgery I was so nervous I almost got out of bed to leave.  In fact, the only reason I stayed is I had been eating soup broth for a month and there really are no other options.  Needless to say I made it through and wish I had it done sooner.  However, I was still nervous about not waking up at home due to the narcotics for pain.  If you feel the same way you should ask your doctor to prescribe an oximeter with alarm for home. 

    Since you won’t get better and it might get worse the older you get I think you should do it sooner.  One thing you definitely should try to avoid is letting your esophagus keep stretching as it will make the surgery less effective.

    I don’t think you have anything to worry about and wish you the best of luck. 

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply Ed, especially the suggestion about an oximeter. I'm going to mention it when I go in for pre- op.

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