Hiatal Hernia Repair at Swedish Medical Center
A hiatal hernia is a condition in which the upper part of the stomach moves up through a small opening in the diaphragm into the chest. Often times patients with hiatal hernias have no symptoms and a diagnosis is made while looking into other illnesses such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). In some cases, repair surgery may be necessary to correct the hiatal hernia.
Hiatal hernia repair surgery can often be performed laparoscopically and generally consists of three parts:
- Freeing up attachments that kept the stomach up in the chest and getting the stomach back down into the abdomen
- Repairing the opening in the diaphragm by sutures and a patch used to reinforce the sutured closure
- Folding the stomach around the lower esophagus to create a bumper which prevents the stomach from riding back up into the chest again
When a hiatal hernia is associated with GERD, the repair procedure is done during the Laparoscopic 'Nissen' Fundoplication surgery.