Original article|Articles in Press

Short-term outcomes after peroral endoscopic myotomy, Heller myotomy, and pneumatic dilation in patients with achalasia: a nationwide analysis

Published:January 10, 2023DOI:

      Background and Aims

      Peroral endoscopic myotomy (POEM), laparoscopic Heller myotomy (LHM), and pneumatic dilation (PD) are the most common modalities for management of achalasia. Our study aimed to directly compare their short-term outcomes and safety profile in a hospitalized cohort in the United States.


      The National Readmission Database (2016-2019) was queried using International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification codes to identify a cohort of inpatient admissions who underwent POEM, LHM, or PD. Baseline demographic variables, resource utilization, periprocedural outcomes, and 30-day readmissions were analyzed. A univariate and multivariate logistic regression model was used to compare odds of readmission with POEM as a reference.


      LHM was the most performed procedure (n = 9710) as compared with PD (n = 2453) and POEM (n = 1911). Patients undergoing PD were older with a higher Charlson Comorbidity Index. The 30-day readmission rate was 4.3%, 3.9%, and 12.6% for POEM, LHM, and PD, respectively. Compared with POEM, the adjusted odds of readmission for PD was 2.42 (95% confidence interval, 1.56-3.75). There was no statistically significant difference in odds of readmission for LHM (.91; 95% confidence interval, .62-1.33) compared with POEM. Within the 30-day readmitted population, 13.1% of PD and 3.4% of LHM patients required achalasia-related procedural intervention. The rate of bleeding (4.3%), blood transfusion (2.3%), and mortality were higher (1.1%) in PD as compared with POEM and LHM.


      In the United States, the risk of readmission and resource utilization are higher in patients with achalasia undergoing PD. The outcomes are comparable between POEM and LHM, but there is a significant difference between the utilization of these myotomy procedures.


      LHM (laparoscopic Heller myotomy), LOS (length of stay), NRD (National Readmission Database), PD (pneumatic dilation), POEM (peroral endoscopic myotomy)
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