Oesophageal Patients Association
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Giving birth post esophagectomy?

Hi, I'm 9,5 years post ectomy (total esophagectomy with colon interposition and top-stomach ectomy due to Achalasia) and I'm expecting a baby in mid-october. The pregnancy has been normal and everything is fine with the baby and me so far, but now I'm concerned about giving birth.

Could the intense labour procedure damage my replaced organs (colon as my new esophagus, stomach) somehow?

Could it end up with a hiatal hernia since my diaphragm now is more open? (Or maybe that would already have occured from the pressure of the baby at this point?)

I know many of you guys are not in this situation, but I remember someone in here - Aoife - who had children post ectomy. I'd like to hear from you and anyone who knows if a natural birth is safe post ectomy - or should I insist on a C-section?

I have sent this question to my surgeons, but I won't get an answer until next friday, plus I want to have as much input and information as possible.

Thank you.

4 Replies

not much help for you now.


I had mine by c-section but do remember that I am also a type 1 diabetic so that messed things up for me as well. Mine were born at 33 and 34 weeks. Being a mother is wonderful and is worth everything.

Best wishes to you and enjoy the wonders of being a parent :)

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I know one young woman who had a successful pregnancy after an oesophagectomy-type operation after being born with TOFS (it is where the oesophagus does not join up with the stomach at birth).

The internal organs do get squeezed / strained during pregnancy, especially in the later stages, but female bodies are designed to cope with this. I suspect that the surgical joints will not be affected at all, but if you have a residual hiatus hernia from your surgery this could feasibly be made worse.

The general principle is going to be how well you are feeling as you progress. It might depend a bit on the details if your surgery, so I think I would ask for the advice of your original surgeon; they will be delighted to help, I am sure. And the obstetricians / midwives should also be asked for advice in advance.


I'be had the same operation as you and gave birth twice with no problems at all. I wish you well in your pregnancy and hope you have a trouble free birth too.

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