Able to swallow without choking - Guillermo Verjan
“After the procedure, I just wanted to call my doctor, Priyam V. Tripathi, MD, MPH, and hug her and thank her,” exclaims Guillermo Verjan, who had been living with esophagitis for 10 years.
“You have trouble swallowing. It’s scary because you go out to dinner or you’re with people you don’t know and you start choking. I was just trying to manage it, but I don’t know why I waited so long have this procedure done. It completely changed everything. I’m sure there are lots of people who just live with esophagitis like I did; not knowing there is a solution. And it’s an easy one. I don’t think I’m going to have to have any other procedures done. The difference is amazing.”
Have no fear - Harry Corder
“If I had not had this procedure, then I would’ve had cancer of my esophagus,” believes 72-year-old Harry Corder, who came to UCLA Health after finding out he had Barrett’s esophagus with high grade dysplasia, or precancerous changes in the cells of the esophagus. “Dr. V. Raman Muthusamy explained I would need several radiofrequency ablation treatments. I went in every four to six months for three years to get the procedure done. It was really easy. It was an outpatient procedure at UCLA Health, which I thought was outstanding. Dr. Muthusamy talked with me every time before the procedure and all of his assistants were wonderful. It’s been two years that I've been under surveillance and all my biopsies are negative, so I’m considered in the clear. If you have high grade dysplasia of Barrett’s esophagus, have no fear of this procedure. Everyone associated with Dr. Muthusamy and UCLA Health were just marvelous.”
Improving the esophageal health of people all over the community - Jeffrey L. Conklin, MD
“Most of my career has been centered on understanding how the esophagus works and managing or treating patients with esophageal diseases,” explains Dr. Jeffrey L. Conklin, medical director of the UCLA Robert G. Kardashian Center for Esophageal Health. “Probably the most common disease we see is gastroesophageal reflux (GERD), which seems to be rampant in our society these days. A lot of folks, if they could change their lifestyle, probably wouldn't need medications.”
“If you have heartburn and your primary care doctor has given you treatment, but it has not been successful, then you should probably be seen by a gastroenterologst to determine whether or not reflux is the cause of your heartburn. If the reflux is really bad and the patient is having a lot of problems, there are surgical techniques to take care of their reflux. We just opened this new center for esophageal health, and we're looking forward to improving the esophageal health of people all over the community.”