Frequently Asked Questions about the LINX Reflux Management System

General Surgery Clinic

UW Health at The American Center

4602 Eastpark Blvd.

Madison, WI 53718

(608) 440-6300

UW Health surgeons may implant the LINX® Reflux Management System as a surgical option to prevent gastroesophageal reflux disease.

 

What is the LINX® Reflux Management System?

 

The LINX® system is a small ring made of interlinked titanium beads that surgeons implant using a minimally-invasive, laparoscopic technique. After implantation, the LINX® system's magnetic beads constrict to bolster the existing structure of the esophagus and prevent gastroesophageal reflux. But the LINX® system does not inhibit eating. The magnetic beads relax during swallowing, allowing food to pass through the esophagus to the stomach. The system also allows a patient to belch or vomit, if needed.

 

For whom is the LINX® Reflux Management System intended?

 

The LINX® Reflux Management System is indicated for patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease that has not responded to maximum medical therapy. 

 

How long does surgery take?

 

Usually about one hour.

 

Will I notice the device after it has been implanted?

 

Some patients have reported trouble swallowing after the device is implanted. This is often temporary and is a normal part of the healing process.

 

Will I be able to eat as I normally do after surgery?

 

Patients are encouraged to return to a normal diet as quickly as they can.

 

How long will it take before I can return to my normal activities?

 

Patients can often return to non-strenuous activities a few days after surgery.

 

Does the LINX® Reflux Management System work?

 

The Food and Drug Administration conducted a clinical trial with the LINX® system and reported the following results:

  • Before implant, all patients required daily proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). After implant, 8 percent did.
  • Before implant, 70 percent of patients endured reflux that affected their sleep daily. After implant, 2 percent did.
  • Before implant, 76 percent of patients had reflux affecting food tolerances. After implant, 2 percent did.
  • Before implant, 55 percent of patients had severe heartburn affecting daily life. After implant, 1 percent did. 

Can LINX® be removed if needed?

 

Yes. LINX® can be removed laparoscopically and does not limit patient's future treatment options. 

Can patients have an MRI after LINX® placement? 

 

Yes, LINX® patients may undergo an MRI up to 1.5 Tesla MRI scan. Patients should discuss MRI options with their provider prior to deciding on treatment with a LINX® device. 

 

What else should I know about the LINX® Reflux Management System?

 

The LINX® system is designed for life-long use. All of the equipment LINX® uses is designed so it does not wear out over time.