Blocks to book 2007-11-10 18:47:49
I am a long-time gerd sufferer. I have reflux laryngitis, diagnosed by an
ent years ago. I’ve chosen to manage my symptoms through diet and lifestyle
changes. I don’t like the fact that the gerd medications only change the
nature of the reflux and do not stop the reflux. I’ve had none of the more
modern tests done. It was diagnosed by the ent from my symptoms and from a
look at my larynx with a lighted tiny scope put down my nose.
Can the stretta procedure be done on a person who chooses not to use
medications and who wants the chance for actual relief; such as a successful
stretta procedure might provide? I do not want to take the risk of a more
invasive operation than the stretta at this time.
I am not overweight. I don’t smoke or drink I am a female athlete in her
50s. My reflux was under good control for many years but in the last year I
have been unable to control it adequately through diet and lifestyle
changes. The nature of the reflux has changed to a thick mucous in my
throat that causes coughing. I always had coughing in years past, but there
was rarely mucous and the reflux cough was a dry one brought on by a throat
tickle the reflux caused.
I still choose not to use the medications because I believe they cause
problems of their own and they do not prevent ongoing damage. I also
recently learned the medications can be a cause of pneumonia though
aspirated stomach contents that are not sterilized due to a lack of stomach
acid. I reflux all the way into my sinuses and I think I am now aspirating
reflux into my bronchial tubes because I’ve developed this mucousy cough
I want to go for the stretta without having to be a reflux medication
failure first. Do you know if a surgeon might be willing to do this for me
or would I have to be on the meds and have them fail first? That makes no
sense to me.
Thanks so much.
Blocks to Books
Howard mccolli 2007-11-10 18:48:30
EGD would need to be done to assess the state of your esophagus and
determine whether or not a hiatus hernia is present, and if so, its size.
Ambulatory pH testing would need to done to confirm that you have reflux,
and to what extent it occurs and under what conditions. Esophageal manometry
would need to be done to assess esophageal function, and the state of the
lower esophageal sphincter. Assuming no large hiatus hernia, and a
reasonable resting LES tone, and no acute esophagitis, Stretta would be a
viable option. Be aware that some or many insurance companies still label
Stretta “investigational” and won’t pay for it. In some cases, they will pay
for it, but only after documented medication failure.
Blocks to book 2007-11-10 18:48:34
Thank you very much for the comprehensive response. Thank you also for
explaining why they require people to be failing on medications. It makes
sense that it’s an insurance requirement. Otherwise it seemed like a
senseless requirement. (Ins. companies do need to protect their bottom line
and I guess that’s one way to do it.)
I don’t know what a stretta procedure costs, but I would be willing to save
up my money and pay out of pocket for the procedure or take out a loan to
have it done if I qualified after the other testing showed I was a good
stretta candidate. I can’t cope with going on the meds I know that.
Would the same doctor who does the stretta be able to do the tests you
mention or does testing have to be done by a gasto doctor? (Perhaps gastro
doctors do the stretta. I’m fairly ignorant but getting desperate due to the
lpr symptoms I’m no longer able to control.) I live in the Phoenix, Arizona
area. Thank you so much for being willing to share your expertise with
Howard mccolli 2007-11-10 18:48:39
Gastroenterologists and surgeons are specialties that do Stretta, and
perhaps some ENTs (the guy that invented Stretta is an ENT). Generally (not
always) gastroenterogists do the esophageal testing, however, beware because
not that many gastoenterologists understand GERD all that well IMHO. Best
best is to go to the Curon website physician locator (
http://www.curonmedical.com/Patients/physicianlocator.html ) , find a
physician that does Stretta and make an appointment.
Jmc 2007-11-15 13:20:01
Suddenly, without warning, Blocks to Books exclaimed (01-Aug-06 8:25 AM):
Can a cough productive of light yellow mucus be indicative of reflux? I
have two coughs, the dry one that I’m pretty sure is reflux, and a
productive one which has been lingering for something like 9 months. I
and my current Dr. have assumed this is some sort of respiratory thing
left over from some horrible wog I got in Ireland in September, but my
lungs are clear and x-rays and a partial CT came up clear as well.
Both coughs usually trigger from a back-throat tickle.
Never occurred to me that a productive cough could be reflux. Can you
Howard mccolli 2007-11-15 13:20:05
Sure. Cough (dry or productive), hoarseness, sore throat, “tickle”, asthma
are all common extra-esophageal manifestations of GERD. Not to say that’s
what is causing YOUR productive cough, but it’s definitely in the
Jmc 2007-11-15 13:20:15
Suddenly, without warning, Howard McCollister exclaimed (05-Aug-06 1:51 AM):
Ok, thanks. I’ll mention that to my doctor – appt’s next Friday.