Center for Minimally Invasive Esophageal Therapies
Diseases & Conditions
Motility Disorders – Treatments
How are Motility Disorders Treated?
Your treatment options will include:
Surgery is one of the most effective long-term treatments for motility disorders. The most common motility disorder treated by operation is achalasia. If you have achalasia, the surgeon will directly cut the muscle fibers in the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), which will allow food to pass more easily into the stomach. This procedure is sometimes called a Heller myotomy.
There are three ways to perform a myotomy:
- Open surgery, using thoracotomy or incision
- Laparoscopically, meaning through tiny incisions in the abdomen. A thin, lighted tube called a laparoscope, as well as other surgical tools, are inserted through these incisions to allow the surgeon to work on the esophagus.
- Robotic myotomy, in which the surgeon guides robotic instruments in the abdomen using a computer console. The surgeon's hand movements are conveyed to the robotic instruments mimicking the same movements that would be used if larger incisions, big enough for the surgeons hands, were used. Boston Medical Center was the first center in New England to perform thoracic procedures such as Heller myotomy using a robot.