Long-term Outcome of Per-oral Endoscopic Myotomy Performed in the Endoscopy Unit With Trainees

Mohamed M. Abdelfatah, Lucie F. Calderon, Amol Koldhekar, Neil Kapil, Alan Noll, Rush Shah, Parit Mekaroonkamol, Vaishali Patel, Sunil Dacha, George Philips, Nikrad Shahnavaz, Steve Keilin, Field F. Willingham, Jennifer Christie, Qiang Cai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Introduction: Per-oral endoscopic myotomy (POEM) has been widely adopted for the treatment of achalasia as it provides a precise, tailored myotomy in a minimally invasive endoscopic procedure. Several shortterm studies and a few long-term studies have confirmed that POEMis a safe and effective treatment for achalasia. However, the long-term outcome of POEM performed by trainees is unknown. Materials and Methods: We conducted a retrospective study of all patients who underwent POEM for achalasia at our tertiary care center during December 2012 and January 2019. All procedures performed with trainees were included. The primary outcome was the clinical response to POEM, defined as an Eckardt score of <3 after POEM. Trainees were trained in performing mucosotomy and submucosal dissection, creating a submucosal tunnel, identifying gastroesophageal junction, and performing myotomy and closure of mucosal incision in a step-by-step fashion. Trainees' performance was evaluated by the mentor based on several key points in each step. Results: A total of 153 consecutive patients with a median age of 57±18 years were analyzed in this study. Of the total patients, 69 (45%) were male. The median length of follow-up after POEM was 32 months (range: 7 to 77 mo). A clinically significant response to POEM was achieved in 95% of patients at year 1, 84% at year 2, 80% at year 3, 79% at year 4, 78% at year 5, and 78% at year 6 and above. All trainees obtained competence within 6 cases for each step and could perform the procedure alone after 20 supervised cases. Conclusions: Overall, 78% of patients maintained positive clinical response at 6 years following POEM procedure. The recurrence rate of symptoms following POEM was 22% at a 6-year follow-up. This long-term outcome of POEM performed with trainees was comparable to those without trainees in other studies. To our knowledge, this is the longest follow-up and the largest number of patients after the POEM procedure performed with trainees.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)114-118
Number of pages5
JournalSurgical Laparoscopy, Endoscopy and Percutaneous Techniques
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 27 2022


  • Achalasia
  • Myotomy
  • Outcomes
  • POEM

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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