Tim Maalis, age 67, struggled with heartburn and gastroesophageal disease (GERD) for more than 40 years.
“I tried all kinds of medications,” Tim explained. “It got so that I was taking four pills twice a day to get relief. I couldn’t eat half the foods I wanted to.”
Tim’s brother-in-law from the Twin Cities sought GERD care from the Minnesota Reflux and Heartburn Center (MRHC) at Riverwood Healthcare Center in Aitkin and highly recommended it based on his successful outcome.
After comprehensive evaluation and testing, the MRHC reflux specialist diagnosed GERD, as well as a hiatal hernia and Barrett’s esophagus, and advised that the LINX procedure was the best course of treatment for Tim.
The LINX System is a small flexible bracelet of interlinked titanium beads with magnetic cores. It is implanted with a minimally invasive, outpatient procedure around the weak lower esophageal sphincter (LES). The magnetic attraction between the beads helps the LES resist opening to gastric pressures, preventing reflux from the stomach into the esophagus. Swallowing food temporarily opens the magnetic bond, allowing food and liquid to pass normally into the stomach.
“I had an amazing outcome,” Tim said. “After my procedure two years ago, I don’t have any heartburn! Now I can eat and drink anything I want.”
Tim added: “The personal caring by the Riverwood staff is remarkable. My reflux specialist put me at ease right away; he explained what was going to happen every step of the way before, during and after my procedure. Dawn Harcey, the nurse coordinator, explained things so well and was very helpful in setting up my appointments.”
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