Based on recent medical studies, Hiatal Hernias also called Hiatus Hernia occur in approximately 60% of all people aged 60+. This number illustrates the staggering impact of the hiatal hernias and why it’s essential to seek appropriate treatment immediately. Treatment of hiatus hernia includes medication, lifestyle changes, natural remedies, and in severe cases, surgery.
Chiropractic care is one of the most effective forms of natural method that help subside symptoms.
Finding a chiropractor familiar with hiatal hernia treatment should be a top priority. If you live in Kuala Lumpur, visit our chiropractor in Bukit Damansara. You may call us at 03-2093 1000 for more information.
Chiropractic care of hiatus hernia Initial has been proven effective. Symptoms of a Hiatus Hernia are similar to heartburn, or GERD (Gasteroesophageal reflux disease). In this article, we will discuss symptoms, causes, remedies, and chiropractic care. Feel free to share this article with friends and family.
What is Hiatal Hernia?
The term hernia is descriptive of conditions where the body’s internal organs are pushed into areas where they shouldn’t. Hiatal hernia is a condition where the upper portions of the stomach push into the esophagus or food pipe.
Hiatal hernias occur when the Hiatus weakness. The hiatus is the opening in the diaphragm (a muscular wall separating the chest from the abdomen). In healthy individuals, the esophagus connects with the stomach below the diaphragm. In other words, the stomach stays below the diaphragm. However, it is classified as a Hiatal hernia when the stomach bulges, protrudes or comes up above the opening of the diaphragm.
What is the difference between GERD and Hiatal Hernia?
GERD or gastroesophageal reflux disease (acid reflux or heartburn) occurs when contents of the stomach (digestive acids) enter the esophagus. Hiatus hernia (Hiatal Herina) occurs when the diaphragm weakens, allowing parts of the stomach to push up through the opening in the diaphragm. It is important to note that patients with chronic acid reflux, heartburn, and GERD are susceptible to developing hiatus hernia later in life.
There are three types of hiatal hernia (hiatus hernia); sliding, paraesophageal and mixed:
Sliding Hernias (Sliding Hiatus Hernia)
The sliding hernia is the most common type. It occurs when portions of the stomach and the esophagus slide vertically above the diaphragm.
Paraesophageal or Fixed Hernias
The fixed or paraesophageal hernia is rare, but concerning. The fixed (paraesophageal) hernia is a static hernia. In essence, it is stationary (fixed) hernia where a part of your stomach pushes or slides above the diaphragm. Clinically it is of significance because it can lead to vascular compression, causing a decreased blood flow to the stomach.
Mixed Hernia (Mixed Hiatus Hernia)
The mixed form of esophageal hernia is an occurrence where both the sliding and fixed hernia exists parallel to each other. It is the rarest form. Patients with mixed hiatal hernia have significant weakening of the hiatus (opening in the diaphragm). For most, it is a progression of the paraesophageal or fixed hiatus or hiatal hernia.
Causes of H. Hernia include:
- Frequent Coughing
- Constipation (Straining)
- Congenital Defects
- Poor Posture
Symptoms of Hiatus Hernia can include:
- Chest Pain (Pressure)
- Trouble Swallowing
In general, a patient will exhibit some form of pain associated with the chest and/or upper abdomen. This varies from person to person, depending on the hernia and its placement. If the stomach is trapped above the diaphragm and the opening is small, it may lead to consistent pain in the area.
It’s important to note a fixed hiatal hernia can cause blood supply disruptions to the stomach due to strangulation. To avoid complications, a surgeon may recommend surgery.
Patients may also notice an increase in regurgitation through the esophagus caused by the hiatal hernia. This is often associated with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and is tied with the hernia. When the muscle in the esophagus weakens, it leads to the acid pushing back up from the stomach.
What are the standard diagnostic tests for Hiatal or Hiatus Hernia?
The typical physical examination of hiatal hernia patient is somewhat similar to assessments of patients with heartburns. Your doctor may require blood tests and X-rays. The X-rays needed for a hiatal hernia differs. These are specialized x-rays that show your stomach and esophagus. You may be asked to drink a liquid (barium). Barium swallow X-rays highlight the esophagus and stomach. Another useful diagnostic test often recommended by doctors is endoscopy. Other tests include:
- Esophageal Manometry Test: Esophageal Manometry is a pressure sensitive tubing is inserted into the esophagus to assess and study the health and strength of esophageal muscles.
- Esophageal pH test: To measure the acidity of your esophagus.
What Are The Most Common Treatment Options?
Lifestyle changes are essential for all hernia patients. They are critical in managing your symptoms and in the prevention of a progression.
The lifestyle changes include:
- Stop Smoking
- Sleeping in an Elevated Position (Approximately 6″)
- Avoid foods that increase your stomach’s acidity (tomato sauce, alcohol, chocolate)
- Stop eating late and avoid mid-night snacks.
- Try to lose weight
We are not big on medication. But, your medical doctor may recommend some meds to alleviate symptoms. Antacids are often recommended, including Tums and Mylanta, to assist with stomach acid. These are fast-acting and easy to consume, ensuring immediate relief without significant side effects. Additional medications to help with acidity include cimetidine (Pepcid) and ranitidine (Zantac). In some cases, the medical doctor may prescribe stronger variations of these medications to alleviate acidity. You will have to contact them for further advice on meds.
For extreme cases, the medical doctor may suggest a surgical procedure. The surgeon will attempt to reconstruct the opening of your diaphragm and remove the hernia sac. We encourage you to visit your medical doctor for more advice on the surgical route. Make sure they explain the long-term success. Keep in mind that surgery is not a cure. Even if you opt for surgery, you will still have to change your lifestyle habits.
Chiropractic Care for a Hiatus Hernia
A natural solution used by doctors includes chiropractic techniques designed to alleviate pain-related symptoms. The hernia (stomach and esophageal) are known to develop from poor posture and muscle weaknesses that place excessive pressures on your stomach and diaphragm. If the pressure remains, corrective chiropractic care might assist with the symptoms.
Before the chiropractic treatment commences, we will perform a detailed examination to identify hidden causes or aggravating factors. Our chiropractor will evaluate you for potential inconsistencies in the spinal column, pressure points, and other relevant details. In general, patients often come in with structural deviations (misalignments) in the cervical, thoracic spine and/or rib cage. These misalignments (subluxations) leads to several symptoms, including the ones mentioned above. Subluxation is a chiropractic term used to describe neurological issues (pinched nerves) that cause loss of health and symptoms. Our evidence-based chiropractors will assess and target these subluxations to stabilize or get rid of the misalignment (subluxations or neuro-muscular interruptions).
The chiropractic treatment generally involves minor corrections (adjustments) of the cervical (neck) and the thoracic spine (upper and mid back). Adjustments are performed gently and in a controlled manner to offset potential symptoms while maintaining positive progress. The procedure is personalized based on the patient’s condition and may include lifestyle changes to strengthen the diaphragm.
The goal of our chiropractic treatment is to alleviate short-term symptoms while sustaining the diaphragm’s integrity. The chiropractic adjustment (treatment) can help minimize or get rid of pinched nerves, strengthen soft-tissues. Our chiropractic treatments will include adjustments for the abdomen as well as the spine. In doing so, the vast majority of our hiatal hernia patients experience significant relief of their symptoms.
How is the chiropractic treatment for GERD or Hiatal Hernia given?
For abdomen-related adjustments with a hiatal hernia, the process includes a specialized list of steps. To begin, the patient breathes in and out to determine where the pressure’s location before coming up with a viable strategy. After the determination, appropriate pressure is applied to the stomach and diaphragm to help to lessen the symptoms. The process includes the manual use of chiropractic techniques such as light palpation (pressing around the abdomen). Targeted chiropractic care can help reposition the upper stomach and ensure the opening doesn’t create long-term problems. It’s important to note this treatment is often in unison with treatments given by your medical doctor, lifestyle changes, including dietary improvements. Most patients will notice improvements within the first few sessions.
Why is Chiropractic Care Better?
The primary reasons chiropractic care remains a top option for a patient includes its non-invasive qualities. A patient receives treatment without exerting further pressure on the body via medications and/or surgery. With traditional medicines, the body has to deal with a long list of chemicals, and surgical procedures come with their own complications. As a result, it’s easier to rely on a straightforward process involving chiropractic care.
Targeted, specialized, and designed sessions help the patient over time. The sessions are non-invasive and offer significant relief.
2) Long-Term Benefits
It’s one thing to receive treatment for short-term symptoms and another to manage long-term occurrences of hiatal hernias. A person prone to hernias may end up in the same position years from now. With targeted chiropractic care, the foundational cause is treated head-on. This helps remove pressure from the upper stomach while getting rid of all associated symptoms.
The value of long-term relief is an essential component of chiropractic care. It helps in several ways and can offer consistent comfort to the patient.
3) No Harsh Chemicals
The conventional treatment involves harsh chemicals, including aggressive medications. These medications may or may not assist with the underlying condition leading to long-term consequences. A patient doesn’t have to deal with these potential concerns with chiropractic care. The treatment involves nothing more than manual adjustment techniques to help with a hiatal hernia. This is often safer and faster than the average medication.
If you have GERD or Hiatal Hernia (Hiatus Hernia) and would like to have a natural non-intrusive treatment option, call Chirorpactic Special Center in Kuala Lumpur at 03-2093 1000 for an assessment today.