Achalasia – The day of the operation using POEM

At 6:00 I was awakened, I slept well during the night, thanks to the 1mg Temesta. I had a 1/2 hour time left for the morning toilet. At 06:30 I received a relaxation pill. I only noticed that I became quiet, but I’m not asleep. At 06:45 2 nurses have picked me up and brought me into the operation room. I was once more asked by my name, date of birth and why I am here, security check!

Then I was put on the operating table and wired, placed the infusion a venous catheter and thus also the input for the anesthetic syringe. On the face they placed me an oxygen mask so that the lungs are filling up properly with oxygen. The anesthetic equipment controls based on my height and weight automatically the necessary amount of anesthesia. Monitored by a headband which measures the brain waves, thus indicating how deep I sleep. They also injected me a painkiller. Because the esophagus does not have as many pain-sensitive regions, I received a relatively small amount. Now came the anesthetic  syringe. I felt like the drug went up the arm,  I felt dizziness in my head, no pain, it was not unpleasant and I was already gone, sweet dreams.

2 hours later, according to plan, I woke up in the recovery room. My wife was already present. I was not bad, I felt no pains, no signs of dizziness, maybe a little sleepy still. As the anesthesia physician told me later, I opened my eyes in the operating room as soon as the anesthesia was turned off. The breathing tube was removed, I myself moved from the operation table over to my bed. All this I can not remember at all, amazing!

In the recovery room I had to stay about 6 hours. The monitors have monitored my overall condition. All clear. I had no pain. At most if I moved a bit, I felt like a muscle ache in the abdomen, as if you train too hard. I was very relieved that everything went so well, my wife too.

Both of my surgeons, Prof. H. Inoue and Prof. Seewald came by to ask how I feeld.  I wanted to find out more how the surgery went, “… everything was on schedule” they answerd. The muscle was very strong and Prof. Inoue had to cut several times. But the technology has been victorious in the end. It was a sign that the muscle has developed a lot of strenght and therefore I had always again the same problems of dysphagia even after balloon dilatation.

After the 6 hours in the recovery room, I could go back to my room, where it was much quieter. I have received infusion, antibiotics, painkillers and acid blockers (Pantozol). I think the painkillers were not really necessary, but they help to obtain a general sedative. Eating as well as drink was still not allowed,  I must still have a little patience. I felt absolutely no side effects. At night, I once believed to have a fever, but when the temperature was measured, it was 36.3 degrees celsius, absolutely normal.

I survived the first day much better than I could have imagined.


13 thoughts on “Achalasia – The day of the operation using POEM

  1. my father is suffering with this problem achlasia cardia . from last 8 years .
    he has got delitation 2 times of 35 mm and 40 mm
    but now after delitations his problem is increased ,
    and now we are thinking to get a surgery
    we are confused that we should go on with laproscopic or poem surgery .
    wether this poem is successfull as it is a new surgery ?
    its results are for long term or not ?
    and which doctor is best for that in india
    as we belong from jalandhar (india)

  2. I am from Sri Lanka and I underwent POEM surgery on 10th Sept 2014 at the Global Hospital in Mumbai. The surgery was done by Dr. Amit Maydeo. After six years I am able to eat normally now. I can recommend Dr. Maydeo to anyone who wishes to undergo this procedure.

  3. I did dilatation thrice, but it did not give me any relief at all. Maximum I was ok for a about 2 weeks, but thereafter I was back again to achalasia symptoms.

  4. Im Swathi 25years old and unmarried girl from Chennai India,…when my eating complication started at the age of 19 , 2008. I wasnt much aware of it on that time.i didnt take any treatment ..after fw months and years i couldnot able to eat food. i used to take vomit after eating food…. On 2012 only i realized that im suffering from LES & reflux (ph monitoring test showed my acid reflux is 12%..My doctor didnt ask me to move for surgery….. I taken treatment …. after that i can able to eat but it couldnt reduce my vomiting…after 7years of my struggle finally my doctor asked me to move for fundoplication surgery. What im realized now is i dont have any Chronic reflux problem…Yesterday i done a menametry It shows LES relaxation of 69% and perithalsis otherwise esophagus normal study…I dont want to move for a surgery without any knowledge of it… suffering from both LES and Reflux(not much)….before going to the surgery i want to know fundoplication surgery is enough are else Heller myotomy also needed…(my doctor preferd me to do fundolpication only) ….or POEM is better?????? i dont want to things get wrong after surgery…before going to do it i want to make clear all those things……Any POEM surgery done in Chennai …IF anyone willing to share ur experince mail me

  5. I have achalasia and had the POEM procedure last year August 2014. It went really well for me with no complications. I live in the USA and I was 66 when I had the endoscopic surgery.

    • Ann, where in US did you have it done? I’m having it tomorrow at NYU in Manhattan. Hope you are doing well. Did they take your clips out?

  6. Hello,
    I’ve been recently diagnosed with achalasia after struggling with it in various forms for approx. 7 years. I haven’t been able to eat without a large amount of water for about 3 years now (constantly losing weight and feeling immensly uncomfortable eating in public) and am suffering from horrible chest pains from time to time. My doctor advised me to have a POEM surgery, which seems like a very effective treatment of the disease. Nevertheless, I am pretty much afraid of possible long-term effects, such as strong reflux etc. I am 24 years old, so I’m hoping to find a solution to my problem that won’t cause unbearable after effects in the years to come.
    Is there anybody who already underwent the surgery and can share his/her experience with me?
    I’d be very grateful!

    • Hi Lily,

      I had POEM surgery and as I described my experiences in detail on this blog I just can tell you that at the moment I feel great. All the problems of achalasia went away. Of course nod thin is perfect. Every day I have to take a tablet of Esomep against reflux. Each year I have some control of my esophagus and just on the entrance to the stomach it is a bit red, so it means that the acids are burning down there the esophagus. I do not feel anything about this. That’s what at the moment I feel, everything else is having a normal life.
      Think about alternatives to POEM? Well there are not a lot and evaluating the pros and contras with a doctor will clarify to take your decision what to do. In life there are always some risks, you can’t have nothing for sure, but doing nothing is also bad for you.
      I wish you all the best and that you will find your solution which will be best for you,
      Best regards,

  7. I have achalasia too, and trying to decide whether to get the POEM or Heller Myotomy. Thanks for sharing your story. Did you experience acid reflux afterwards? I would love to hear more about your long term results. Can you please email me at I would love to ask you a few questions.

    Thank you!

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