REDMOND, Washington. – EndoGastric Solutions® (EGS), a leader in incisionless procedural therapy for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), announced today that the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) has issued a Technology Coverage Statement on Minimally Invasive Surgical Options for GERD.
Randomized controlled trial data from Transoral incisionless fundoplication (TIF®) performed using the EndoGastric Solutions’ EsophyX® device system was in the AGA Statement cited.
The AGA Statement addresses transoral fundoplication for the management of patients with GERD. The key points are:
- Recognizing that the AGA medical position statement on the management of GERD has not been updated since 2008, AGA convened a multi‐disciplinary workgroup to develop a framework for selected services and procedures related to the diagnosis and treatment of GERD.
- The goal of GERD therapy is to control both the symptoms and mucosal damage.
- This procedure [transoral fundoplication] delivers patient outcomes similar to those provided by conventional antireflux surgery (ARS) procedures and does not limit future treatment options.
- In conclusion, the three‐year plus evidence [for the TIF procedure] is sufficient to demonstrate sustainable improvement in health outcomes, symptom relief, decrease in PPI utilization and improvement in esophageal pH with transoral fundoplication.
- Transoral fundoplication should be covered and reimbursed for appropriate patients who meet the selection criteria as described.
“This demonstrates key society support for the TIF procedure as an anti-reflux procedure option for chronic GERD suffers,” said Skip Baldino, President and CEO of EndoGastric Solutions. “We are grateful to the AGA and its panel of experts to issue such a review in advance of updates to existing society guidelines.”
“This statement by the AGA is important for advocacy work with payers,” said Philip Macdonald, Vice President, Healthcare Economics, Policy & Reimbursement. “Publishing new guidelines can be time consuming and cost prohibitive. The evolution of data-proven technologies to treat chronic diseases is accelerating so the Technology Coverage Statement by the AGA can help fill the gap during the society’s guideline review cycle. This ensures society membership is able to provide safe and effective treatments for chronic disease sufferers sooner.”
About Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®)
CPT codes are a listing of descriptive terms and identifying codes for reporting medical services and procedures. The purpose of CPT is to provide a uniform language that accurately describes medical, surgical, and diagnostic services, and thereby serves as an effective means for reliable nationwide communication among physicians and other healthcare providers, patients and third parties. CPT® is registered trademark of the American Medical Association.
The Federal Register has posted coding and payment information specific to the new CPT code, allowing patients to more easily receive access to treatment for GERD. Physicians and hospitals can reference CPT Code 43210 EGD esophagogastric fundoplasty and APC 5331 Complex GI Procedures for TIF procedures as of January 1, 2016.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a common gastrointestinal disease that affects nearly 20 percent of the U.S. population. It is a chronic condition in which the gastroesophageal valve (GEV) allows gastric contents to reflux (wash backwards) into the esophagus, causing heartburn and possible injury to the esophageal lining. In the United States (U.S.), GERD is the most common gastrointestinal-related diagnosis physicians make during clinical visits. Some patients may have mild or moderate symptoms of GERD, while others have more severe manifestations causing chronic heartburn, asthma, chronic cough, and hoarse voice or chest pain. Left untreated, GERD can develop into a pre-cancerous condition called Barrett’s esophagus, which is a precursor for esophageal cancer. The first treatment recommendation for patients with GERD is to make lifestyle changes (e.g., diet, scheduled eating times and sleeping positions). Proton pump inhibitor (PPI) medications are commonly used to treat GERD, but there are a variety of health complications associated with long-term dependency on PPIs, and more than 10 million Americans are refractory to PPI therapy and may opt for surgery.
About Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication (TIF® 2.0 procedure) for Reflux
The TIF 2.0 procedure enables an incisionless approach to fundoplication in which a device is inserted through the mouth, down the esophagus and into the upper portion of the stomach. This approach offers patients looking for an alternative to traditional surgery an effective treatment option to correct the underlying cause of GERD. Based on clinical studies, most patients stopped using daily medications to control their symptoms and had their esophageal inflammation (esophagitis) eliminated up to five years after the TIF 2.0 procedure. Additionally, clinical results have demonstrated that concomitant laparoscopic hiatal hernia repair (LHHR) immediately followed by TIF 2.0 procedure is safe and effective in patients requiring repair of both anatomical defects.
Over 22,000 TIF procedures have been performed worldwide. More than 100 peer-reviewed papers have consistently documented the sustained improved clinical outcomes and exemplary safety profile the TIF procedure provides to patients suffering from GERD. For more information, please visit www.GERDHelp.com.
With the support of clinical societies, commercial and federal insurance providers, representing more than 100 million lives, have recognized the value of the TIF 2.0 procedure through recently expanded coverage policies. The TIF 2.0 procedure is a covered benefit for all Medicare beneficiaries across the country.
For the TIF 2.0 procedure, physicians and hospitals can reference CPT Code 43210 EGD esophagogastric fundoplasty. CPT is a registered trademark of the American Medical Association.
About EsophyX® Technology
The EsophyX technology is used to reconstruct the gastroesophageal valve (GEV) and restore its function as a barrier, preventing stomach acids from refluxing back into the esophagus. The device is inserted through the patient’s mouth with direct visual guidance from an endoscope, and enables creation of a 3 cm, 270° esophagogastric fundoplication. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration cleared the original EsophyX device in 2007. The evolving technology, including the latest iteration EsophyX Z+, launched in 2017, enables surgeons and gastroenterologists to use a wide selection of endoscopes to treat the underlying anatomical cause of GERD.
The EsophyX device, with SerosaFuse® fasteners and accessories, is indicated for use in transoral tissue approximation, full thickness plication and ligation in the gastrointestinal tract. It is indicated for the treatment of symptomatic chronic GERD in patients who require and respond to pharmacological therapy. The device is also indicated to narrow the gastroesophageal junction and reduce hiatal hernia ≤ 2 cm in size in patients with symptomatic chronic GERD. Patients with hiatal hernias larger than 2 cm may be included, when a laparoscopic hiatal hernia repair reduces the hernia to 2 cm or less.
About EndoGastric Solutions®
Based in Redmond, Washington, EndoGastric Solutions, Inc. (www.endogastricsolutions.com), is a medical device company developing and commercializing innovative, evidence-based, incisionless surgical technology for the treatment of GERD. EGS has combined the most advanced concepts in gastroenterology and surgery to develop products and procedures to treat gastrointestinal diseases, including the TIF 2.0 procedure—a minimally invasive solution that addresses a significant unmet clinical need. Join the conversation on Twitter: @GERDHelp Facebook: GERDHelp and LinkedIn: EndoGastric Solutions.
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