IMPORTANCE: Laparoscopic repair of paraesophageal hernia (PEH) has been shown to result in excellent relief of symptoms and improved quality of life (QOL) despite a relatively high radiographically identified recurrence rate. OBJECTIVE: To assess potential risk factors for recurrence and long-term change in QOL after laparoscopic repair of PEH. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: This was a prospective study of 111 patients who underwent elective laparoscopic repair of type III PEH with biological mesh buttressed over a primary cruroplasty from April 3, 2009, through July 31, 2014, at the Department of Surgery, Johns Hopkins University of Medicine. We administered a modified version of a validated gastroesophageal reflux disease-specific QOL tool to patients before and at 2, 12, and 36 months after the procedure. Higher QOL scores represent greater severity of symptoms. An upper gastrointestinal tract barium-contrast radiographic examination was performed at 1 year to assess for recurrence. Demographic factors, comorbidities, and preoperative radiographic findings were analyzed as possible indicators for recurrence using logistic regression. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Quality of life, measured by the gastroesophageal reflux disease-specific QOL tool, and recurrence, defined as a PEH of greater than 2 cm. RESULTS: Median patient age was 61 years, 63.1% of patients were women, and 81.1% of patients were white. Four patients required reoperation, of which only 1 was for symptomatic recurrent PEH. The mean follow-up time for the 36-month QOL assessment was 43.5 months. The overall preoperative and 2-, 12-, and 36-month QOL scores were 28.50, 10.18, 9.74, and 10.58, respectively (P < .001). Recurrences were found in 19 of the 70 patients (27%) who completed the 1-year radiographic examination. Compared with baseline, all individual symptoms improved significantly except for early satiety (mean [SD] score, 3.18 [1.88] at baseline vs 2.07 [1.70] at the 36-month follow-up; P = .07), nausea (1.69 [1.63] vs 0.77 [1.25]; P = .08), pain with swallowing (1.06 [1.50] vs 0.53 [0.90]; P = .73), and bloating/gas (3.28 [1.71] vs 2.23 [1.72]; P = .05) at the 36-month QOL assessment. Although not statistically significant, preoperative hernias containing most of the stomach were more likely to recur after repair when compared with those involving gastric cardia and fundus (odds ratio, 3.74 [95% CI, 0.93-15.14]; P = .06). CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: Overall, laparoscopic repair of PEH with biological mesh results in excellent long-term QOL. The cause of recurrence is likely multifactorial and individualized to each patient. Further evaluation of novel techniques and unidentified patient factors is needed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas