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I have been in constant pain for over a month. My mom finally made me make a GI appointment. I am really scared to go. What are the treatment plans for Hiatal hernias? Has anyone had one and had surgery? I know that this is the problem because I was diagnosed with one about two years ago but i has never bothered me like this before. I am really scared :( to see what the doctor is going to say. My appointment is next wednesday.

Thanks everyone :)

Amanda NY

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more often than not, hiatal hernias in adults are treated with diet and lifestyle changes and medication. are you on a PPI? my 2 1/2 year old was born with a hiatal hernia which caused pretty severe reflux and she had surgery just before she turned 10 months old, but hiatal hernias in infants are different than hiatal hernias in adults.

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I was on prevacid for 4-1/2 years and it has done nothing for me. I eat antiacids like they are skittles. I live on them. I eat or drink anything and it makes me feel bloated and i feel very fatigued, I am also having some problems breathing (I am not sure if that has anything to do with it?) I will be 21 in about 1 month. When my doctor told me about this 2 years ago, she described it as being "abnormally large" now I dont know what that really means in medical terms and it really was not bothering me then, but now that it is I dont know if they can get worse or not. I am not really familar with it but all i do know is that it is making me feel like cr*p. :(

Thank you :)

Amanda NY

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one of my twins was having shortness of breath for quite a while before we figured out it was caused by reflux----so, yes, your hiatal hernia could be causing your breathing problems. i would like to have the surgery done on my daughter----the meds are so dang expensive. i don't know if she has a hernia or not, but she has a lot of trouble with her reflux. they do the surgery laparoscopically now, so there is minimal scarring and i have heard there is not alot of pain. eating only soft foods for a few months might be a pain, but it might be a lot better than the way you are feeling now.

i forgot to say that hiatal hernias can get worse.

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The most common surgery to correct a hiatial hernia is called a lap nissen, a laprascopic proceedure as the name implies. I think it involves taking a muscle from your chest wall or somwhere and wrapping it around your esophagus to create a substitute sphincter valve. This keeps the stomach contents in the stomach - theoretically. It's a lot less traumatic than the old way of repairing those hernias where they used to go in through the back of your neck. Sounds like you might be to the point where surgery is the one option left.

Steve

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What are the symptoms of a hiatal hernia and how is it diagnosed? My reflux gets so bad that I feel like someone is sitting on my chest and I have difficulty breathing. I also have some kind of esophageal muscle spasms.

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What are the symptoms of a hiatal hernia and how is it diagnosed? My reflux gets so bad that I feel like someone is sitting on my chest and I have difficulty breathing. I also have some kind of esophageal muscle spasms.

You gottem'. Diagnosis is made with an upper GI/endoscopy. This is an extremely common medical problem and there is a higher incidence with Celiacs. I have a small one. Caught it pretty early and Protonix keeps my GERD in check.

Steve

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Thank you so much everyone. I really appericate your respones. I have been fighting reflux for over 6 years now. 4 of which i have been on prevacid. It makes me extremly uncomforable. I am really worried about scaring I dont want to have any scars on my stomach. I mean I am only 20 I love going to the beach and I consider myself to have a fit body. I would certaintly hope that it would improve my life style. How long is the healing process, because I commute back and forth to school carring a 25 pound back pack on my shoulders. I commute from Long Island to the city so it is about 2 hours. I go back to school in september. I would have to get it done at least a month before I go back to school right?

I am just extremely scared. Has anyone on this board gotten to this point where you have needed surgery. Also if you have how long did they keep you in the hospital and how long were you out of work. I also just sit at a desk all day so would I be able to go back to work sooner.

Thank you all so much again.

Amanda NY

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I was recently dx with a hiatal hernia. They found it during my endoscopy for celiac. I am lucky because it rarely bothers me. Sometimes I would get the "heart attack" feeling they say is a symptom and need to take short breaths, but that goes away pretty quickly.

My Dr. told me one way to treat it is to have many small meals rather than 3 bigger ones. I have done that anyway for a long time which may be why I did not know I had an issue. Maybe small meals would help you.

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i can tell you about my daughter's procedure. it was called a nissen fundoplication. the top of the stomach is wrapped around the bottom of the esophagus and stitched in place, creating and artificial valve to keep stomach contents where they belong. a nissen wrap is a full wrap, a toupe wrap is a partial wrap. motility problems would one reason to do a partial wrap.

my daughter has 5 tiny little scars that are hardly visible. one below the sternum for the camera, and 2 on each side below her ribs. one to hold the stomach, one to hold the liver, and the other 2 for the surgical instruments. she went in to surgery around 9:30 in the morning----it took 3-3 1/2 hours. we only stayed one night in the hospital and went home the next evening at about 6:00. her surgery was on a thursday and i took her to church on sunday. she really did not seem to have much pain after the first couple of days.

she had to be on pureed food for about 2 months. she has never had any complications from her surgery. she cannot throw up, but she is able to burp.

there are probably different ways the surgery is done by different doctors---but at least this can give you an idea of what to expect.

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she can not throw up? why is that, not that I am looking to do that. Even being 20 I would still have to have the pureed food? If that was the case with me I dont know what I would do when I went back to school. Oh I also go tanning I know that it is not very good for you but I love the way it makes me look. I also only go about 1 to 2 times a week if that. Do scars tan? or would tanning make them more noticable?

Thank you so much for sharing your story.

Amanda NY

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Here's a link, Amanda, to the surgerical procedure we are talking about:

http://www.geocities.com/fundofamilies/description.html

It is usual not to be able to vomit after this surgery, I think. The reason might be that vomiting involves the contraction of the stomach, which after this procedure where part of your stomach acts as a valve to close off the esophagus from reflux, would cause the esophagus to be closed off.

Steve

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i had an endoscopy and nothing was mentioned about a hernia. can i assume i don't have one?

If it was anything serious or anything that your docotor was concerened with she would have mentioned it to you. Or if you are that unsure......just call and ask. I usually dont have a problem with doctors returing my phone calls.

Good Luck

Amanda

Steve.....thank you for the website. :)

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