Font Size
A
A
A
...
5
...

Hiatal Hernia (cont.)

Exams and Tests

The first visit for the symptoms of hiatal hernia may warrant tests to rule out more serious or life-threatening causes first, such as heart disease.

A thorough history will be taken to determine associated symptoms, circumstances, and risk factors for various diseases. Tell the doctor about foods or activities that help or worsen the symptoms.

A complete physical exam will focus on the digestive, pulmonary (lungs), and cardiovascular (heart) systems. A rectal exam and stool test for blood may be necessary to determine if there is bleeding from the digestive tract.

  • Initial tests

    • Electrocardiogram (ECG) to look for electrical disturbances of the heart from disease

    • Chest x-ray to look for pneumonia, collapsed lung, or other problems in the chest

    • Blood tests to look for anemia, infection, or injury to the heart, pancreas, or liver

    • Other tests focusing on the cardiovascular and pulmonary organ systems if suspicion remains high for problems in these areas
  • Possible follow-up tests

    • Barium swallow or upper GI x-ray series may be performed by a radiologist (you drinks some contrast material, and x-rays are taken).

    • Endoscopy may be performed by a gastroenterologist. A long fiberoptic scope is passed through the mouth and into the stomach looking for an ulcer, tumor, or other tissue damage. Sometimes a biopsy is needed.
Medical Author:
Medical Editor:
Medical Editor:
Medical Editor:

Must Read Articles Related to Hiatal Hernia

Acid Reflux (GERD)
Acid Reflux Disease (GERD) Acid reflux (GERD) is caused by acid backing up from the stomach. Causes of acid reflux include smoking, obesity, alcohol, medications, diet, and other medical ...learn more >>
Barium Swallow
Barium Swallow Barium swallow is a test used to determine causes of painful or difficulty swallowing, and diseases such as GERD, hiatal hernia, ulcers, dysphagia, tumors, or p...learn more >>
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) FAQs
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) FAQs Acid reflux (GERD) is caused by lifestyle factors (alcohol, obesity), medication, diet, medical conditions, and eating habits. Symptoms of acid reflux (GERD) in...learn more >>

Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Hiatal Hernia:

Hiatal Hernia - Effective Treatments

What kinds of treatments have been effective for your hiatal hernia?

Hiatal Hernia - Symptoms

What are your hiatal hernia symptoms?





Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Hiatal Hernia »

A hiatal hernia occurs when a portion of the stomach prolapses through the diaphragmatic esophageal hiatus.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


Medical Dictionary