Comparison of preoperative, intraoperative, and follow-up functional luminal imaging probe measurements in patients undergoing myotomy for achalasia

Amy L. Holmstrom, Ryan J. Campagna, Dustin A. Carlson, John E. Pandolfino, Nathaniel J. Soper, Eric S. Hungness, Ezra N. Teitelbaum*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Background and Aims: The functional luminal imaging probe (FLIP) is a novel catheter-based device that measures esophagogastric junction (EGJ) distensibility index (DI) in real time. Previous studies have demonstrated DI to be a predictor of post-treatment clinical outcomes in patients with achalasia. We sought to evaluate EGJ DI in patients with achalasia before, during, and after peroral endoscopic myotomy (POEM) and laparoscopic Heller myotomy (LHM) and to assess the correlation of DI with postoperative outcomes. Methods: DI (defined as the minimum cross-sectional area at the EGJ divided by distensive pressure) was measured at 4 time points in patients undergoing surgical myotomy for achalasia: (1) during outpatient preoperative endoscopy (preoperative DI), (2) at the start of each operation after the induction of anesthesia (induction DI), (3) at the conclusion of each operation (postmyotomy DI), and (4) at routine follow-up endoscopy 12 months postoperatively (follow-up DI). Routine Eckardt symptom score, endoscopy, timed barium esophagram, and pH study were obtained 12 months postoperatively. Results: Forty-six patients (35 POEM, 11 LHM) underwent FLIP measurements at all 4 time points. Preoperative and induction mean DI were similar for both groups (POEM, 1 vs .9 mm2/mm Hg; LHM, 1.7 vs 1.5 mm2/mm Hg). POEM resulted in a significant increase in DI (induction .9 vs postmyotomy 7 mm2/mm Hg, P < .001). There was a subsequent decrease in DI in the follow-up period (postmyotomy 7 vs follow-up 4.8 mm2/mm Hg, P < .01), but DI at follow-up was still significantly improved from preoperative values (P < .001). For LHM patients, DI also increased as a result of surgery (induction 1.5 vs postmyotomy 5.9 mm2/mm Hg, P < .001); however, the increase was smaller than in POEM patients (DI increase 4.4 vs 6.2 mm2/mm Hg, P < .05). After LHM, DI also decreased in the follow-up period, but this change was not statistically significant (5.9 vs 4.4 mm2/mm Hg, P = .29). LHM patients with erosive esophagitis on follow-up endoscopy had a significantly higher postmyotomy DI compared with those without esophagitis (9.3 vs 4.8 mm2/mm Hg, P < .05). Conclusions: EGJ DI improved dramatically as a result of both POEM and LHM, with POEM resulting in a larger increase. Mean DI decreased at intermediate follow-up but remained well above previously established thresholds for symptom recurrence. DI at the conclusion of LHM was predictive of erosive esophagitis in the postoperative period, which supports the potential use of FLIP for calibration of partial fundoplication construction during LHM.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)509-514
Number of pages6
JournalGastrointestinal endoscopy
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Gastroenterology


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