Peroral endoscopic myotomy (POEM)
POEM is an endoscopic procedure used to treat swallowing disorders, most commonly for Achalasia.
Achalasia and other swallowing disorders are usually caused by the oesophagus muscles and the lower oesophagus sphincter muscles not relaxing, making it hard to swallow and hard for the food to pass into the stomach. Other symptoms besides swallowing issues may be heartburn, weight loss and an overall low quality of life.
A benefit of having an endoscopic procedure, especially for swallowing disorders, is that there are no incisions in the chest or abdomen and includes a minimal or sometimes no hospital stay post-procedure.
Currently POEM is only offered by a few centres in the United Kingdom. Amyn Haji introduced POEM to the UK in 2013 and performed the first procedure. he was trained by Prof Haru Inoue in japan who invented the procedure in 2008, and has since been involved in education and training in Europe to mentor doctors wishing to introduce this in their practice.