Surgical repair

Surgery for hiatal hernia is usually considered only when medications and lifestyle changes fail to relieve severe reflux symptoms, or if you have complications such as chronic bleeding or narrowing or obstruction of your esophagus.

Large hiatal hernias may also need repair if they cause symptoms such as shortness of breath, difficulty breathing or swallowing, or chest pain. An operation for a hiatal hernia may involve pulling your stomach down into your abdomen and making the opening in your diaphragm smaller, reconstructing a weak esophageal sphincter, or removal of the hernia sac.

Our surgeons always prefer to repair hiatal hernias with minimally invasive (laparoscopic or robotic)  techniques whenever possible. That involves inserting instruments and a fiber-optic camera through several small incisions in your abdomen. The operation is then performed while your surgeon views the images on a video monitor (laparoscopic or robotically). Minimally invasive surgery generally causes less pain and scarring and requires a shorter hospital stay than does larger chest or abdominal incisions. The procedure that’s best for you may be determined by the kind of hernia you have and the experience of your surgeon.



Mayo Clinic