A hiatal hernia is a type of hernia that can be common in people over the age of 50. It differs from other types of hernias because it’s completely internal and shows no visible symptoms. Hiatal hernias can cause acid reflux, or GERD, in a patient once fully developed. Acid reflux is a condition in which the contents of the stomach move back up into the esophagus, causing heartburn and other symptoms. If chronic acid reflux is associated with a hiatal hernia, and has been unresponsive to non-surgical treatments, the expert physicians at Reflux Surgery Center of Excellence and Hernia Surgery Los Angeles can perform a hybrid procedure to both repair the hernia and treat the acid reflux.
How is a Hiatal Hernia Treated?
Hiatal hernias are most commonly treated without the need for surgery. A good portion of the time, patients don’t even know they have a hiatal hernia unless it becomes symptomatic. Medications, therapy, and lifestyle changes are most often used as treatment options for hiatal hernias. A lesser common type of hiatal hernia is known as a paraesophageal hernia. This type of hiatal hernia tends to be more symptomatic and lead to complications, such as the loss of blood supply to the protruding section of the stomach.
When a hernia is large enough and causing symptoms, or is a paraesophageal type, laparoscopic surgery can be necessary. Surgery can be the best option for hiatal hernias associated with chronic acid reflux, especially when the hernia poses the danger of further complications.
How is Acid Reflux Treated?
Like many hiatal hernias, acid reflux is often treated without a surgical procedure. Diet and lifestyle changes, along with medications and certain therapies can usually be sufficient in treating acid reflux. When a hiatal hernia is responsible for the chronic acid reflux, non-surgical treatments may be ineffective. When this is the case, laparoscopic surgery can be used to fix the hernia and Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication (TIF) is performed to treat the reflux.
TIF is a minimally-invasive surgical procedure used to relieve GERD in a patient. TIF is a new favorable alternative to traditional antireflux surgery. There are many advantages to using TIF over the traditional method. It is performed transorally through the patient’s mouth and requires no abdominal incision or dissection of internal anatomy. An advanced device known as the EsophyX is used to reconstruct the antireflux valve for a more accurate and complete repair.
Treating Both Together
Since LaPeer Health Systems allows for frequent collaboration between departments, a more complete and thorough treatment can be offered. In cases that involve chronic acid reflux due to a hiatal hernia, the expert physicians at Reflux Surgery Center of Excellence and Hernia surgery Los Angeles can team up to provide the best possible treatment for complete relief. If surgery is required, these top surgeons can perform a sort of hybrid procedure to fix both problems at once. The TIF procedure is combined with laparoscopic hernia repair, ensuring the best possible outcome for the case.
The TIF procedure offers numerous advantages when performed on its own, and there are even more benefits when combined with a hernia repair procedure. Many of these cases will require both procedures for complete and lasting relief. There are obvious benefits to having to undergo only one operation instead of two, but also the chance of lasting success is increased when these procedures are combined into one operation.
Acid reflux and GERD are not always caused by a hiatal hernia, but they have shown a correlation. Since hiatal hernias can be difficult to detect, it is important to seek expert medical guidance if you experience any symptoms of acid reflux. Both hernias and acid reflux are very treatable conditions, but can cause serious problems if ignored. Many cases can be treated without surgery, but the risk of complications and worsening symptoms may make surgery necessary. Thankfully, the expert team of doctors at LaPeer offers the latest and most minimally-invasive techniques for repairing hernias and eliminating symptoms of acid reflux, no matter the cause or condition.
Contact a Hernia and Acid Reflux Expert in Los Angeles Today
If you are experiencing symptoms of chronic acid reflux, it is important to seek medical attention from an expert. Our world-renowned physicians offer the latest and most advanced treatment options for acid reflux and will develop the very best course of treatment for your individual case.
Contact Reflux Surgery Center of Excellence at 888.593.1042
For more information on Hernia Surgery Los Angeles, call 888.418.2082