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Hiatal Hernia

Summary

A hiatal hernia is a condition in which the upper part of the stomach bulges through an opening in the diaphragm. The diaphragm is the muscle wall that separates the stomach from the chest. The diaphragm helps keep acid from coming up into the esophagus. When you have a hiatal hernia, it's easier for the acid to come up. The leaking of acid from the stomach into the esophagus is called gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). GERD may cause symptoms such as

Hiatal hernias are common, especially in people over age 50. If you have symptoms, eating small meals, avoiding certain foods, not smoking or drinking alcohol, and losing weight may help. Your doctor may recommend antacids or other medicines. If these don't help, you may need surgery.

NIH: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

Resources

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) Also in
  • (American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy)
  • (American College of Gastroenterology)
  • (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research) Also in
  • Hiatal hernia repair - slideshow (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) Also in
  • (American College of Radiology, Radiological Society of North America) Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) Also in

Clinical Trials

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)

Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)

Patient Handouts