Loading icon
Press enter or spacebar to select a desired language.
Health Information Center

Fundoplication—Open Surgery

  • Cynthia M. Johnson, MA
Publication Type:


Fundoplication—Open Surgery


Fundoplication is surgery to wrap the upper stomach around the lower esophagus. This will create pressure on the lower part of the esophagus to reduce the amount of stomach acid that can move up the esophagus.


Fundoplicationhttp://services.epnet.com/getimage.aspx?imageiid=24732473si1362.jpgFundoplicationNULLjpgFundoplicationNULL\\filer01\Intellect\images\si1362.jpgCopyright © 2002 Nucleus Communications, Inc. All rights reserved.17NULL2002-10-012553912473_14813Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

Reasons for Procedure

The surgery is done to treat severe gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). It may also be done to repair a hiatal hernia, which can lead to GERD.

Possible Complications

Problems are rare, but all procedures have some risk. The doctor will go over some problems that could happen, such as:

  • Excess bleeding
  • Problems from anesthesia, such as wheezing or sore throat
  • Infection
  • Problems swallowing
  • Limited ability to burp or vomit
  • Return of reflux symptoms
  • Damage to the lining of the esophagus
  • The need to repeat surgery due to the wrap slipping or a new hiatal hernia forming (rare)

Things that may raise the risk of problems are:

What to Expect

Problems to Look Out For

Call the doctor if you are not getting better or you have:

  • Signs of infection, such as fever and chills
  • Redness, swelling, excessive bleeding, or any discharge from the cut
  • Pain that you cannot control with medicine
  • Lasting nausea or vomiting
  • Problems swallowing that do not improve
  • Problems passing urine or blood in the urine
  • Cough, shortness of breath, or chest pain
  • New or worsening symptoms

If you think you are having an emergency, call for medical help right away.

Prior to Procedure

The surgical team may meet with you to talk about:

  • Anesthesia options
  • Any allergies you may have
  • Current medicines, herbs, and supplements that you take and whether you need to stop taking them before surgery
  • Fasting before surgery, such as avoiding food or drink after midnight the night before
  • Whether you need a ride to and from surgery




  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/gastroesophageal-reflux-disease-gerd.
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)/heartburn. The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center website. Available at: https://wexnermedical.osu.edu/digestive-diseases/heartburn.
  • Hiatal hernia. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/hiatal-hernia.
  • Nissen fundoplication. MUSC Health Digestive Disease Center website. Available at: https://muschealth.org/medical-services/ddc/patients/gi-surgery/laparoscopic-surgery/nissen-fundoplication.


  • Mark S. Itzkowitz, MD, JD
Last Updated:

This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.