There are lots of medications available to treat heartburn, but here's something new that may let you put aside those pills forever. It's called Enteryx, and it's a permanently implantable device that was actually FDA approved last year. It is finally becoming more widely available though for the treatment of reflux.
"The procedure is basically an injection of a material polymer that's injected into the lower part of the esophagus. That adds some stiffness to the lower part of the esophagus and prevents the gastric content from refluxing back up into the esophagus," says Dr. Barry Migicovsky, internal medicine.
In patients with reflux, that muscle at the base of the esophagus is weak. When Enteryx is injected, it forms a spongy layer inside that muscle.
In a 12 month study of 85 patients, 67% were able to discontinue all medications after the injection. However, there are some minor side effects.
If you'd like to learn more about Enteryx for the treatment of reflux, it is being used now at Covenant. In fact, Dr. Elias Ghandour told me on Wednesday that coincidentally, he is planning his first Enteryx procedure on Thursday.
Experts say only patients diagnosed with persistent gerd are candidates for the procedure. For more information, you can (click here).