What Are Basics of Hiatus Hernia?


What is the definition of hiatus hernia?

A hiatal hernia occurs when the upper part of your stomach pushes up through your diaphragm and into your chest region.

The diaphragm is a large muscle that lies between your abdomen and chest. You use this muscle to help you breathe. Normally, your stomach is below the diaphragm, but in people with a hiatal hernia, a portion of the stomach pushes up through the muscle.


What signs and symptoms of hiatal hernia?

It’s rare for even fixed hiatal hernias to cause symptoms. If you do experience any symptoms, they’re usually caused by stomach acid, bile, or air entering your esophagus. Common symptoms include:

  • belching
  • chest pain or epigastric pain
  • heartburn that gets worse when you lean over or lie down
  • trouble swallowing


What causes hiatus hernia?

Most of the time, the cause is not known.

A person may be born with a larger hiatal opening. Increased pressure in the abdomen such as from pregnancy, obesity, coughing, or straining during bowel movements may also play a role.


What are hiatal hernia treatment options?

Here are some treatment options for hiatal hernias:

  • Lifestyle changes – It may help to eat smaller meals several times a day instead of three large meals. You should also avoid eating meals or snacks within a few hours of going to bed.
  • Medications including antacids, H2-receptor blockers and proton pump inhibitors.
  • Surgery – If medications don’t work, you might need surgery on your hiatal hernia.


What are medications for hiatal hernia?

Medications your doctor may prescribe include:

  • over-the-counter antacids to neutralize stomach acid
  • H2-receptor blockers that lower acid production
  • proton pump inhibitors to prevent acid production, giving your esophagus time to heal


To learn more you should go to a medical professional.

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* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.