When Does a Hiatal Hernia Require Surgery?
When does a hiatal hernia require surgery? Does a hiatal hernia need surgery? Do all hiatal hernias require surgery? What size hiatal hernia needs surgery? Does a hiatal hernia always require surgery? What kind of doctor does hiatal hernia surgery? Does hiatal hernia surgery require a hospital stay? Is surgery required for a hiatal hernia? If you’re wondering what happens if you don’t have hiatal hernia surgery and if hiatal hernia is left untreated, you should be aware that despite the need for surgical treatment, not undergoing this operation can lead to serious complications.
The protrusion of the upper part of the stomach into the esophagus is defined as a hiatal hernia. This is a condition that is more commonly seen in older individuals.
Hiatal hernia is a condition that reduces the quality of life for patients. Individuals may seek medical attention with complaints such as a burning sensation in the lower chest, pain spreading from the stomach to the throat, regurgitation of stomach acid and consumed food, and cough. While some cases may require medication, others may necessitate surgery as the only solution. Surgical intervention is not typically the first option for patients without reflux symptoms. However, if the patient complains of reflux symptoms, surgery may be necessary.
Hiatal hernia is the sliding or protrusion of the stomach towards the esophagus. This condition can lead to the escape of stomach acid into the esophagus, causing gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). GERD can lead to serious complications such as inflammation, ulcers, bleeding, narrowing, and cancer in the esophagus. Additionally, hiatal hernia can cause the stomach contents to enter the respiratory tract, leading to respiratory problems such as hoarseness, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pneumonia, and respiratory failure. It can also trigger heart problems such as arrhythmias, heart attacks, and heart failure.
Hiatal hernia surgery can be performed to prevent or treat these health problems. This surgery, performed using the laparoscopic method, involves making small incisions in the abdominal wall. This method offers less pain, shorter recovery time, and lower complication risks compared to open surgery. Hiatal hernia surgery can be performed in different ways depending on the size, type, location of the hernia, and the overall health condition of the patient. The primary goal of the surgery is to return the stomach to its normal position, correct the pressure difference between the esophagus and the stomach, and strengthen the diaphragm to prevent the recurrence of the hernia.
Recommended Content : Gastric Sleeve Turkey
When Should Hiatal Hernia Be Operated?
A hiatal hernia occurs when part of the stomach protrudes through the opening between the stomach and the esophagus, called the hiatus, into the chest cavity. It can be large or small. Small hiatal hernias usually do not cause any symptoms.
In patients with hiatal hernia, if the condition is not worsening, it often does not show significant symptoms. Therefore, it may not require treatment. However, if there are persistent symptoms such as recurrent reflux and stomach burning, medical treatment or surgery may be necessary. Some situations that may require treatment include:
Surgery is necessary for patients who have difficulty losing weight, are under chronic stress, and cannot get out of this situation.
In cases of hernia strangulation, the patient should be urgently taken to surgery, regardless of the severity of reflux.
If the patient is taking medications such as blood pressure medication, birth control pills, pain relievers, or osteoporosis medication, and cannot stop using these medications, surgery may be required.
For patients with hernia who do not want to take medication for a lifetime, surgery is the only solution.
What Happens If I Don’t Have Hiatal Hernia Surgery?
Hiatal hernia is a health problem that must be treated. As the hernia grows, the symptoms will increase, and the treatment process will become longer and more challenging.
Continuous contact of stomach acid with the esophagus can lead to esophageal cancer. Especially those experiencing intense cough and hoarseness symptoms should consult a doctor without delay.
Recommended Content: Hiatal Hernia Surgery Turkey
What Happens If Hiatal Hernia Is Not Treated?
If a large hiatal hernia is not treated, the following problems may occur:
Esophageal Damage: Irritation of the inner surface of the esophagus due to stomach acid can occur, leading to problems such as esophageal cancer, esophageal narrowing, and esophageal ulcers.
Stomach Bleeding: Hiatal hernias can also cause stomach bleeding, manifesting as blood in the stool or vomiting of blood.
Reflux: Reflux, the backflow of stomach acid and other contents into the esophagus, can lead to symptoms such as burning, acid regurgitation, cough, throat pain, and chest pain.
Stomach Obstruction: Large hiatal hernias can cause the esophagus to become blocked. In this case, patients may not be able to eat or may vomit immediately after eating.
How to Prevent Hiatal Hernia?
Here are some measures you can take to reduce the risk:
Avoid lying down after meals.
Stay away from activities that tighten the chest.
Do not lift heavy weights.
Seek treatment if you have obesity problems.
Do not smoke and avoid alcohol.
For all your questions about hiatal hernia and surgery, you can consult us and request an appointment with our doctors for accurate diagnosis and effective treatment.