Open peroral endoscopic myotomy for the treatment of achalasia: a case series of 82 cases
. During peroral endoscopic myotomy (POEM), creation of the tunnel is highly technically demanding and mucosal injury is one of the most common potential complications. We explored a method without a submucosal tunnel, which we call open peroral endoscopic myotomy (O-POEM). This study aimed to assess the feasibility and safety of O-POEM. O-POEM was performed on 82 patients with achalasia. Treatment success was defined as an Eckardt score of less than or equal to 3 after the myotomy. Adverse events including operative and postoperative adverse events were recorded. Treatment success and procedure-related adverse events were analyzed. After a median follow-up of 18 months (range: 6-26 months), the treatment success (Eckhart score ≤3) was achieved in 96.3% of cases (mean score pre- vs. post-treatment (7.4 vs. 1.8); P < 0.001) with a recurrence of 3 cases. Ten patients (12.2%) had adverse events consisting of 2 cases of mediastinitis, 1 case of post-O-POEM bleeding, 1 case of subcutaneous emphysema, 6 cases of pleural effusion. Two cases of mediastinitis required intraprocedural drainage, and other patients were managed by endoscopy and conservative medical treatment. There were no deaths. No patients required surgical conversion. Clinical reflux occurred in 15.9% of patients (13/82). O-POEM was reliable and effective for the treatment of achalasia. In addition, O-POEM might be a better option for patients with severe submucosal fibrosis.