Cooperation with Dr. Ulf Kessler in Lausanne

Visceral surgeon Dr. Ulf Kessler has been at Hirslanden Clinique Cecil as an attending physician for more than a year, and has his practice at CMD Lausanne. With his extensive experience in visceral surgery, he is a competent partner for Swiss1Surgery with Dr. Jörg Zehetner, Professor (USC), in the special field of reflux surgery, as well as surgical intervention with the LINX Reflux Management System.

With the cooperation of Dr. Ulf Kessler and Swiss1Chirurgie, the range of services for the use of the LINX Reflux Management System can now also be offered in Lausanne. In this way, we are extending our radius of action to western Switzerland in the interests of our patients.

In March 2022, the collaboration between Dr. Jörg Zehetner and Dr. Ulf Kessler successfully treated a patient with the LINX Reflux Management System for the first time at the Hirslanden Clinique Cecil in Lausanne. The 45-minute operation was minimally invasive and the patient was discharged from the hospital after two days without any symptoms.

What’s new?

Dr. Zehetner has already performed 350 surgeries with the LINX Reflux Management System in Bern since 2015. This surgery is considered for all patients with typical reflux symptoms, small to moderate diaphragmatic hernia and with normal esophageal function. Now this surgical technique, which has been tried and tested worldwide for ten years, is also available to patients in French-speaking Switzerland.

With Dr. Ulf Kessler, an ideal partner for such interventions was found. Dr. Ulf Kessler was in training for a period of three years to specialize in visceral surgery at the Hirslanden Klinik Beau-Site in Bern, and has already worked with Dr. Jörg Zehetner – as the responsible tutor for Upper GI Surgery and Bariatric Surgery.

During this time, the results of the first 150 operations with the LINX system were also published in Bern. Dr. Kessler’s scientific collaboration was a key factor in the success of the project. In the Hirslanden Center for Digestive Diseases in Lausanne, an ideal partner was found for Western Switzerland, especially since important accompanying specialties such as endoscopy and gastroenterology/hepatology are also on site there.

Interested patients and affected relatives from Western Switzerland can contact Dr. Kessler directly in the future. With his team on site in Lausanne, Dr. Kessler will then perform the assessment and, in collaboration with Swiss1Surgery with Dr. Zehetner, perform any surgical procedures using the LINX Reflux Management System.

Through this collaboration, the good care during the clinic phase and also the follow-up by an experienced specialist can be guaranteed.

The cooperation between Swiss1Surgery and Dr. Ulf Kessler is groundbreaking for this field. This means that the expertise of Dr. Jörg Zehetner, who has the most experience with the LINX system in Switzerland to date, can also be made available to patients in French-speaking Switzerland.

For patients with special questions, the Swiss1Surgery practice in Bern and the GGP Gastroenterology Group Practice with its special functional diagnostics naturally remain a direct and good point of contact.

For further questions we gladly refer to the website

Thun is another Swiss1Surgery site

The need for professional services in obesity surgery is increasing. Also in Thun and the surrounding area. And so it was only a logical step that the clinic of Dr. Naef in Thun now became part of the network of specialized facilities of Swiss1Chirurgie. You can learn more about this in the article.

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Why quick surgery is better than antibiotics alone

It is hard to believe: In the last two decades, great efforts have been made to prove that antibiotic therapy is better than laparoscopic (minimally invasive) surgery for mild appendicitis.

What is the appendix? When does appendicitis occur?

The appendix is a more or less pointless appendix on the large intestine in the right lower abdomen. It is between 5-10 centimetres long, about one centimetre wide and can become inflamed at any time. The reasons for infection are always debated. The fact is that appendicitis can occur in early childhood as well as in old age, practically at any time.

How do you notice an appendicitis?

It usually starts with diffuse abdominal pain and loss of appetite, sometimes nausea and vomiting. The pain then moves to the right lower abdomen. Later, fever and a rapid pulse may also occur.

It is important to go to a hospital emergency quickly. If the clinical examination by the doctor is clear and the situation is urgent, surgery may be performed immediately. However, an ultrasound scan or computer tomography is often performed to confirm the diagnosis or to exclude other causes for the abdominal pain.

How we treat appendicitis in the swiss1chirurgie clinic

Rapid surgery is the best therapy! This is also confirmed by a study just published in October 2018 in the well-known journal “Surgery”. The study uses a large American database to describe the safety of a rapid laparoscopic appendectomy (appendectomy, through three small incisions with minimally invasive instruments). This solves the problem once and for all. Antibiotic therapy alone in uncomplicated appendicitis (i.e. only mild infection) is often advocated, but the initial success rate is at most 75%. The risk of having another infection afterwards is almost 20%.

Antibiotics are therefore only given directly before the operation and are only necessary after an operation if the appendix had already broken through (perforation, pus discharge, abscess). Antibiotic therapy for 5-7 days is then necessary, possibly even with inpatient intravenous administration.

More about the swiss1chirurgie clinic, appendicitis and other of our focal points at You can find out more about the Centre for Bariatric Surgery at


YB’s run of success in the 2017/2018 season redeemed Bern from a 30-year curse: they finally did it again, the Young Boys, and the championship title was celebrated extensively in the city of Bern over 3 evenings. Then the team cleared another hurdle: qualifying for the Champions League!!! The draw brought arguably the best possible draw: in a group with Manchester United, Valencia and Juventus Turin. Who would have thought that players like Pogba and Ronaldo would be playing on the artificial turf at the Stade de Suisse Wankdorf Bern Stadium this autumn? Will Ronaldo actually play on 12.12.?

YB’s run of success has also brought together doctors from the Hirslanden Group’s Salem Hospital and Beau-Site Hospital: a group of over 20 doctors – cardiologists, orthopaedists, urologists, internists and surgeons – meet at their own expense on 2 tables in the YB Pub area for a joint YB event. This brings interdisciplinary cooperation, exchange among colleagues, new projects, and above all supports YB and thereby Bern.

Many doctors will also be in the stadium on 12 December: this time, however, not in the VIP area, but distributed among all Bernese to also take a look at Ronaldo and Co. Hup YB!!

The swiss1chirurgie clinic and the Centre for Bariatric Surgery join forces with Hirslanden to support the Young Boys Bern football team.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

We at the swiss1chirurgie clinic wish our patients, our referring physicians, our staff, our partners and colleagues a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

The year 2018 was a great year for many of us! For some, however, it is also associated with suffering, pain, illness and grief. We think of those whom we could not save despite all our efforts and our thoughts are with their relatives.

We always work with the highest knowledge and conscience. Our surgeons Dr Zehetner and Dr Steffen always strive to achieve the best possible individual result.

For 2019, we wish everyone good health, lots of motivation, good resolutions and also good success in putting them into practice!

Our clinic will be closed from 22.12.2018 to 06.01.2019 inclusive, then we will be motivated again in the swiss1chirurgie clinic to be available for your registrations, enquiries and requests. However, in urgent cases, the surgeons of Bern Visceral Surgery at the Beau-Site Clinic are available for you. For emergencies, please use the Beau-Site clinic, which is open around the clock for emergencies.

What will be new in 2019?

Outpatient surgery in the canton of Bern

This applies to our clinic in the area of #haemmorrhoid surgery or for unilateral #inguinal hernia operations. Here we will inform you about the possible changes during a consultation in our clinic.

Website / Info blogs / Social Media

We will be even more motivated to update our channels to provide the best possible information about our #swiss1chirurgie clinic. We will plan lectures and contributions especially on the topic of #reflux (heartburn, acid reflux) and on the topic of #overweight (drug therapy, surgical therapy). Take a regular look at our pages and

For everyone in Bern and the surrounding area

We will register as a group zfbc (Centre for Bariatric Surgery) at the Bern GP for the Old Town Run (5km). And as a group together with our staff and patients, if anyone is interested in running with us. Here you will find the most important information about the registration and the programme of the #BernGP.

“Team zfbc” together at the Old Town GP 2019 in Bern!

The Grand Prix will take place in Bern on Saturday, 11 May 2019. As “Team zfbc” we would like to tackle the old town route (4.7 km) together. The distance can either be run or walked.

Participation is free for the first 20 registered persons! For further participants the entry fee is CHF 43.00. Each participant will also receive a “zfbc” running shirt.

Registration: hand in the form at the clinic or send an email to

Registration deadline: Sunday, 31 March 2019

You can find more info here.

1st EMEA GERD Symposium in Hamburg on 11 and 12 July 2019

Johnson&Johnson called for a symposium and the gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) specialists came. Also present was Professor Jörg Zehetner, who enjoys an exceptionally good reputation both in science and in the clinic as a globally recognised expert in minimally invasive surgical reflux methods.

Johnson&Johnson called for a symposium and the gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) specialists came. Also present was Professor Jörg Zehetner, who enjoys an exceptionally good reputation both in science and in the clinic as a globally recognised expert in minimally invasive surgical reflux methods.

The symposium was all about gastro-oesophageal reflux disease, which often causes persistent or recurrent acid regurgitation, severe heartburn or unpleasant burning in the stomach in its chronic course and thus complicates patients’ everyday lives. A proven method for surgical intervention is the LINX Reflux System, which has now been used in the clinic for ten years. This is a small chain consisting mainly of titanium-coated magnets that is placed around the end of the oesophagus in a minimally invasive procedure. With this system, the regurgitation of gastric acid is prevented, while all other physiological functions such as food intake, regurgitation of air or even vomiting remain unhindered by the LINX system.

Dr. Jörg Zehetner is one of the top 5 reflux specialists in Europe and is one of the nine leading experts in the field at Johnson&Johnson. These alone were good reasons to invite Dr Zehetner to speak at the symposium in Hamburg. In front of more than 85 participants, the specialist explained the excellent possibilities of LINX in his lecture and continued these thoughts in the workshop “Complex cases and complication management in reflux surgery”.

For those who do not know what to make of the abbreviation EMEA, please note: EMEA stands for “Europe, Middle East, Africa” and thus summarises the regions in which Johnson&Johnson is particularly involved with its expertise and products such as the LINX Reflux System. Of course, the commitment also extends to the global arena and supports the scientific and practical efforts of the respective medical experts.

For Dr Jörg Zehetner as well as for the other participants at the 1st EMEA GERD Symposium in Hamburg, the occasion was a good reason to gather the best and latest experiences in reflux surgery and thus define further standards for the benefit of patients.

In the attached picture spread, we show the best moments of the intensive work at the EMEA GERD Symposium 2019 in Hamburg.

Ironman Zurich 2019 – A journey to myself

Who doesn’t know them, the impressive pictures of Ironman Hawaii, which is considered the oldest triathlon in the world. Year after year, athletes meet here to determine their toughest and best in the triathlon of swimming, cycling and running.

Certainly a few numbers smaller but no less challenging, Ironman Zurich presents itself as a complete, internationally recognised Ironman Trial with the 3.8-kilometre swim course, the 180-kilometre bike course and the 42-kilometre run course. Anyone who wants to take part here as a hobby Ironman needs a long, good preparation, an iron will and of course the appropriate preparations.

A long journey always begins with the first step

Two years ago now, I discovered a video on YouTube about “Ironman motivation”. This video was the inspiration for me personally and probably the first step to try Ironman Triathlon myself. Of course, it was immediately clear to me that this could not go well from a standing start. But: Anything is possible!

After all, I had already gained a few years of experience on the mountain bike and the road bike, so at least the bike course shouldn’t be an insurmountable challenge. I can also swim and running is almost part of my daily programme. With a slightly above-average level of fitness, it should therefore be no problem to complete the Ironman 70.3 half-distance triathlon. So, after a year of training, in June 2018 I embarked on the Ironman adventure in the slimmed-down version. 1.9 kilometres of swimming, 90 kilometres of cycling and finally 21 kilometres of running brought me to my first intermediate goal on the way to the big Ironman. But the half-distance is not the whole Ironman and so I set a new goal in summer 2018. I wanted to tackle Ironman Zurich 2019.

Training, motivation, renunciation

Regardless of whether you are a professional or a hobby participant, if you want to complete the Ironman in its full internationally recognised distance, you have to expose yourself to regular and hard training. The only question is when and how. The recommendations speak of at least 10 to 15 hours a week, with all three disciplines equally represented if possible. That means at least two hours of training every day. And that alongside family, work, conferences, congresses and emergency missions.

It takes a lot of motivation, which can only be maintained over time if you know what you want and have the necessary support from your family. And, of course, this motivation also means overcoming your inner pig dog every day and removing the small and large obstacles in your self-motivation. Only if this succeeds is good and regular training possible. And of course it takes time.

And it was precisely the time for training that was a point where, in the end, it was not possible without renunciation. I didn’t want to give up life with my family and I didn’t want my patients to have to give up anything when it came to my professional commitment. All that was left was to give up sleep. And surprisingly, this works quite well despite or even because of the active sport.

In the preparation phase for Ironman Zurich 2019, I got up three times a week between half past four and five in the morning, set about cycling training, which I then also liked to repeat on the weekend as a 3-5 hour activity. Swimming for one and a half hours twice a week in the morning and running whenever possible in the evening. And that at any time of year, in any weather and in almost every place I have been in the last twelve months.

A balanced training always includes the appropriate rest days, which I limited to one or two days a week, depending on my workload and family plans. In the end, I felt better and better prepared for the big triathlon in Zurich and felt what good individual training can mean even for such big challenges as the Ironman.

21 July 2019, Zurich – The Big Day

After almost exactly one year of training, the time had come on 21 July 2019. The Ironman Zurich 2019 in the full distance was coming up and now there were no more doubts for me after the registration. I had to and would pass Ironman Zurich. The preparations are ready, wetsuit, bike and food are prepared. Here we go.

I didn’t feel any nervousness at the start itself, I just felt well prepared. After an early start of the day at five o’clock and the impressive start procedure for the professionals, it is then the turn of the amateur athletes. So also me. It all starts with the rolling start at the swim course, so that every few seconds five to ten swimmers start the race. Quickly a few nice words to the comrades-in-arms on the left and right, then we’re off. „See you at the finish line!“

With steady strokes I complete the 3.8 kilometre swim in the fresh Lake Zurich, then get out of the water dripping wet, almost directly onto the bike, which is now to be my friend for 180 kilometres on the ride along Lake Zurich, out of the city, through lush green meadows and small villages. Then it’s off to the running course, which runs four laps through the historic old town, and then it’s done. „You are an Ironman!“

After a total time of 10h31m58s I cross the finish line exhausted but happy and now I know one thing: I am an Ironman. And that’s thanks to good, consistent training, thanks to the support of my family, colleagues  and friends and, above all, thanks to the motivation to achieve something that is exceptional. Now it’s time to relax! And, of course, time for the joy of my own performance, which was also always a journey to myself.

Swiss1Chirurgie opens new location in Brig

The opening of the new Swiss1Chirurgie clinic in Brig was a real highlight for the guests, professional visitors and of course also for the team around Dr Jörg Zehetner. In a short speech, the medical specialist for abdominal surgery and reflux treatments praised the great achievements of the builders and was pleased with the successful implementation of the design ideas in the treatment rooms. Great praise for this also came from the visitors to the opening event, who were very enthusiastic not only during the tours of the rooms.

Those present were particularly interested in the medical services offered in the Swiss1Chirurgie clinic in Brig. It was above all Dr. Jörg Zehetner who went from one conversation to the next and did not simply inform about the range of services, for example, in the surgical treatment of obesity. This is how the first individual questions came, combined with the first diagnoses and the scheduling of the upcoming consultations and interventions.

For all those who were able to attend the opening of the Swiss1Chirurgie clinic in Brig on 26.08.2019, it was both an interesting and informative event. This is not least because a new medical service has been created in Brig, which has already met with great acceptance at the other Swiss1Chirurgie locations in line with a growing need.

Bahnhofstrasse 1, 3900 Brig, Schweiz