A comparison between fluoroscopically guided radiofrequency energy delivery and conventional technique in an animal model of fundoplication failure

David A. McClusky, Leena Khaitan, Rodrigo Gonzalez, Mercedeh Baghai, Kent R. Van Sickle, C. Daniel Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations


Background: The use of radiofrequency energy (RFe) treatment at the gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) has been considered an alternative to surgery after fundoplication disruption. It is unknown whether the recommended delivery technique for primary gastroesophageal reflux disease applies to an anatomically altered GEJ following fundoplication. The aim of this study was to determine whether modifications to the standard technique using fluoroscopic guidance more accurately localizes ablation zones compared with standard technique alone. Methods: Ten pigs were randomized to either conventional or fluoroscopically guided RFe ablation. All pigs had a laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication that was subsequently disrupted by severing all but the most cranial fundoplication stitch. Conventional RFe delivery included usage of markers located on the Stretta catheter. After labeling the z-line via submucosal contrast injection, fluoroscopic guidance involved using fluoroscopic markers to guide RFe ablation. Ablations were acutely marked, measured, and agreed upon by a panel of three researchers analyzing harvested tissue. Distances from the target zone for each ablation line (e.g., 1 cm was the target zone for line 1) were calculated and analyzed using Mann-Whitney and Fischer's tests. Results: Fluoroscopic guidance was significantly more accurate than the conventional technique (0.2 ± 0.2 cm vs. 1.8 ± 0.8 cm, p < 0.0001). Analyzing the individual distances for each of the six ablation lines revealed that all within Group B were closer than Group A (p < 0.01 for all except lines 1 and 2). Overall, the total ablation treatment length for conventionally treated animals was 4.48 ± 0.7 cm and for those who underwent fluoroscopic guidance it was 2.92 ± 0.5 cm (p < 0.001). Conclusion: In a porcine model of fundoplication disruption, fluoroscopic guidance improved RFe accuracy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1332-1337
Number of pages6
JournalSurgical Endoscopy and Other Interventional Techniques
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2007



  • Fluoroscopy
  • Fundoplication failure
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • Porcine model
  • Radiofrequency energy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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