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St. Luke’s first in Lehigh Valley to offer robotic procedure for GERD


St. Luke’s University Health Network is the first provider in the Lehigh Valley region to offer a minimally invasive robotic surgery to place a LINX device in patients suffering from gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and repair associated hiatal hernias.

St. Luke’s thoracic surgeon Dr. Dustin Manchester and bariatric surgeon Dr. Maher El Chaar have both been trained in the LINX procedure.

The LINX device is a string of magnetic titanium beads on a wire that is custom fit to each patient. During the procedure, the device is placed surgically at the gastroesophageal junction. The magnets help keep the lower esophageal sphincter closed to prevent reflux. When a patient swallows, the LINX device opens temporarily to allow food and liquids into the stomach.

Most patients stay in the hospital for one night and are discharged to home the following day. As this procedure is performed minimally invasively with small incisions, most patients have very little pain and can return to work within a few weeks.

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