It is estimated that more than 15 million Americans suffer daily from gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) (De Vault, 1995). The spectrum of symptoms for GERD ranges from simple heartburn and regurgitation to persistent esophageal tissue damage with subsequent development of serious complications. The frequent occurrence and intensity of GERD symptoms can severely impact a person’s quality of life (Behar, 1990). Until recently, treatment options included a lifetime of drug therapy, disagreeable daily lifestyle changes, and the possibility of invasive surgery.
In 2000, the Food and Drug Administration cleared a new endoscopic tool called the EndoCinch™, a device that enables endoscopic endoluminal gastroplication as an outpatient procedure for the treatment of GERD. Endoscopic endoluminal gastroplication has been shown to be a safe and effective therapeutic outpatient procedure offering sustainable clinical benefits and cost savings to patients suffering with GERD (Patel, 2001;Raijman, 2001;Weiland, 2001). The purpose of this article is to present an overview of GERD with a particular focus on management of the disease using this new procedure.