A randomized controlled trial conducted in patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease compared optimized medical therapy using proton pump inhibitor (n = 52) with laparoscopic Nissen fundoplication (n = 52). Patients were monitored for 1 year. The primary end point was frequency of gastroesophageal reflux dis-ease symptoms. Surgical patients had improved symptoms, pH control, and overall quality of life health index after surgery at 1 year compared with the medical group. The overall gastroesophageal reflux disease symptom score at 1 year was unchanged in the medical patients, but improved in the surgical patients. Fourteen patients in the medical arm experienced symptom relapse requiring titration of the proton pump inhibitor dose, but 6 had satisfactory symptom remission. No surgical patients required additional treatment for symptom control. Patients controlled on long-term proton pump inhibitor therapy for chronic gastroesophageal reflux disease are excellent surgical candidates and should experience improved symptom control after surgery at 1 year.