Oesophageal Patients Association
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Hiatus Hernia

Hi, I’m 21 years which I did an endoscopy and it results that I have a big hiatus hernia. So my question is does it sometimes cause chest pains, burning sensation in stomach, shortness of breath and cough llike I feel? Because Im bit worried that is heart related and anxiety flares up.

17 Replies

Hello, Yes, it does cause those symptoms. I had the same and they have all been cured when I had the operation. My H H was very large and complex and I eventually gave up on normal food and lived on pureed meals for 9 months. Now I can eat anything and have no symptoms at all, and no medication needed. I hope you get the help you need. Regards

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Yup they recommened me the surgery and I’m thinking about it. So it’s worth it right? I am fed up now. Every kind of food I eat, booom exactly what you described. Im taking medication everyday and I hate it.


I can only say it was a miracle cure for me. I had the keyhole surgery option, 5 little holes which healed within 6 weeks.

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Can you tell me a bit about it, the after of the surgery pls?


I was so relieved that it was straightforward after all, because it was a large, complex HH. I felt great. There were 5 dressings on 5 sites. They healed very quickly except for the half inch one, mid diaphragm which took longer. I was only in overnight. I was told to keep to the soft food for a while and I did for a few weeks, then I tried a few different things, like bread etc which I couldn't eat before. When I had no trouble with those I tried even more things. The major breakthrough was when I had a bacon sandwich. I love the smell of bacon and hadn't had any for at least a year. I then realised I could eat anything I wanted. I then left off the tablets to see if I needed them and found out I didn't! It has been 12 months now and I have only had to have one sip of Gaviscon in all that time. Brilliant, for me. Hope this helps.

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Thanks a lot. More courage to do it. I might go again to my Gastroenterologist to try refer me for the surgery.

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Hiya .. im no doctor .. heres my personal views from my experience for u to put in the mix.

My view is u shld treat the 2 issues hernia and heart separately with equal importance. Particularly before your problem/s are diagnosed dont try to be the doctor .. i did .. and i regret it big time. Well done u for seeking out this site for advice.

I had giant HH. Im 60. I had nissen fundoplication 360. HH seems ok now but for years i had acid reflux. I never experienced any pain with reflux and just carried on till i began experiencing swallowing issues. The acid burning (u gotta stop any acid burning issues pronto .. u may not even realise burning taking place) has scarred my oesoph narrowing it significantly (initially they thought narrowing was caused by a tumour/cancer; which was nice) so despite HH/reflux being ok my swalowing issues are ongoing and theyre a huge nuisance and i suspect will set me up for future related issues; shld have gone hosp alot earlier). My food backs up cos of narrowing resulting in my oesoph being like a funnel than a tube .. mind u its some funnel .. 10x the width of a normal oesoph at its widest

My sons have friends yur age with reflux. Doctors seem to simply put them on PPI acid supressant tablets rather than treat underlying issue e.g HH which is what u want sorted and u shld press yur doctor accordingly. I was lucky .. i intentionally lost a lot of weight (obesity no good for HH) but doctor took weight loss as suspected C so i got all the tests done and quick all on nhs.

Theres an alternative less invasive op to treat HH/reflux (metal ring goes round sphincter) .. name escapes me .. not all nhs hosps do this op but look into it. My hosp didnt mention it to me .. i found out abt it after my big HH op; too late.

Im not saying some of the issues u described do arise from HH but if u suspect its yur heart get heart checked SOON AS.

Ive had HH op and swallowing apart im back working and doing exercise as i was before .. got 5 aside footy tomorrow to look forward to. I had keyhole .. 5 holes .. but yud never kno. Hosp did quality job. You will see from this site many have much worst related conditions which can affect lifestyle

My parting shot is get the underlying issues sorted .. ppi tablets ok temporarily but not way to go long term imo

Good luck. G


Well to be honest last month I did some blood tests which results perfect my doc says. I suffer from reflex sometimes when i lay down on bed mostly. Also feel food in mouth pipe.


The magnetic Titanium band is LINX band. Few of the NHS trusts offer. Howeve it's useful for Lesser of a HH. You say it's a big HH in which case Nissan fundoplication may be good.


I suspect the HH is hitting up against yur LES preventing the lid on yur stomach (lower oesoph sphincter .. LES) from closing/sealing properly and hence acid/food coming up. Very likely u r burning yur oesoph which is bad news long term.

Get all this verified and read around (good related sites on net .. twitter .. fBook) but id recommend ...

.. if acid coming up then query this and potential burning with doctor asap (likely he suggests ppis .. no prob short term imo)

.. press dr to let him kno u want HH fixed permanently via surgery not ongoing tablets

.. try to get regular endoscopys .. e.g every 6mths .. ask if they spot evidence of burning. Also ask yur hosp/dr abt yur last endosc .. did they spot any burning.

Do all the other sensible reflux prevention stuff which u can read around on e.g.

.. if poss get to a decent weight for yur size as acid worse fatter u r i found

.. elevate bed

.. dont eat big meal late

.. dont eat 2-3hours before bed

I found stomach acted like a balloon. When my stomach was big .. as i turned over in bed it would compress my stomach causing a jet of reflux to come up. Experiment with pillows wedged in your back etc to mimise u turning over in night.

. If u wake up in night due to reflux take a small swig of water to neutralise any acid

.. get yur head round that pressure in yur stomach results in reflux. Imagine yur stomach as a pot on cooker with a lid on; lid = LSE. That pot lid can b moved physically by u moving it (thats yur HH moving the LSE). That pot lid can also b moved by pressure (heat in case of pot). Certain foods u eat will generate gas/pressure in your stomach .. exacerbating reflux .. u need to identify those that affect u and skip eating them late. Improve diet.

.. exercise is generally good but for example some stomach crunches .. given yur hh .. may force acid up. U need to exercise but steer away from those exercises that force the acid up.

.. might not b right for u at this stage but im getting into yoga (you tube .. search yoga digestion). Basically i do it to help release any food stuc in my oesoph .. like an internal digestion cleansing massage .. and also to releive any gas/pressure in my stomach at time of exercise and thereby minimise pressure on my lse during night. Yoga wise for u at this time u need to watch u dont force acid up but there nay b some exercises that reduce stonach pressure build up .. yud also need to watch exercises dont aggravate yur HH. At my stage .. yoga helps.

Finally .. all the above ive experimented with to find they improve my specific condition. Highly unlikely u will b same as me so yuv gotta experiment similarly to address yur specific condition. We..re al different. Cheers. G.

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Dude, really appreciate your help. Really. I will do some of the things you said above to check how I goes. If it will persists I go to my Gastroenterologist again to try refer me for the surgery. Thanks really.


I had acid reflux issues since childhood but only recently got diagnosed. Unfortunately it ended up in oesophaegal cancer at the age of 39. Classic example as mentioned above of experimenting using PPIs and loads of managing rather than root cause resolving by GP.

It's good to see you are well ahead of time to get this one sorted. Good luck.


Hope you are recovered from the cancer mate. What was your symptoms please before it has been diagonosed ?


Thanks. Recovering now, will get wife to help me with a detailed post on my IL oesophagectomy and drama post op.

I had lesser of HH, GERD. Had reflux issues but always was blamed on spicy food etc by others. Very difficult to be believed due to age in my personal experience.

For last many years the reflux, heartburn was very frequent, severe and was triggered due to slight pressure on the stomach. Trust me I could eat most spicy things but wouldn't suffer reflux.

I was finally pushing for LINX and during endoscopy module was found at GE junction.

If I was fortunate to be diagnosed and treated for HH in your age I wouldn't have had cancer today.


Goodluck into recovering 😊. I will make sure that this will be fixed soon as possible. Though I’m bit young sometimes I feel depressed with the symptoms I suffer when ever I don’t take PPIs and if it’s not going get fixed now I believe that later I will suffer from bad consequences.


You have diagnosis and believe confidently that this will be sorted in NHS sooner than later. I can feel when you say about feeling depressed suffering.

Also PPIs won't help if reflux triggered, only gaviscon advance helped me always.

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Yup gaviscon advance helps, but only for short time. I use Emazole 20mg gastro-resistant tablets, one in the morning. I can say they really works but I hate taking medicines in this age daily.


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