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Understanding Esophageal Motility Disorders

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Stories of Patient Power, by Andrew Schorr

Achalasia, one of several types of esophageal conditions, is a rare disease of the muscle of the esophagus. On this episode of Patient Power, we'll focus on understanding esophageal disorders and what treatments are available. Listen to learn how laparoscopic surgery is improving the function of the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) and relieving symptoms for patients like Arline Horwitz, who could not swallow food because her sphincter muscle was dead.

bullet Read Arline Horwitz's robotic hellar myotomy story

This 30-Minute Program Features:

  • Santiago Horgan, M.D.
    Director of Minimally Invasive Surgery
    University of California San Diego Health System

    Dr. Santiago Horgan, Director of Minimally Invasive Surgery at UC San Diego Health System, is an internationally recognized expert in robot-assisted surgery and other minimally invasive surgical techniques. As the director of UCSD’s Center for the Future of Surgery, Dr. Horgan is working with colleagues to advance these scarless techniques by investigating, developing, testing, and teaching procedures that will revolutionize the field of surgery. To date, he has performed more than a dozen NOTES procedures and is involved in continuing clinical trials.
  • Arline Horwitz
    Underwent Robotic Heller Myotomy
    Arline, an achalasia patient, underwent a Robotic Heller Myotomy in August of 2008. Arline could not swallow food because her sphincter muscle was dead and as a result, had to regurgitate every time she ate. Dr. Horgan and the UCSD team took part of her upper stomach and made valves. Today, Arline is doing well, has frequent follow-ups with Dr. Horgan and does not have to take medicine.

bullet Listen to the Audio Program (you will be taken to the Patient Power website)

bullet Read Transcript