Can You Feel a Hiatal Hernia With Your Fingers?

Hiatus hernia is one of the more common diseases of gastro-intestinal old age. It is a problem of displacement of a portion of the stomach through which the esophagus passes through the chest to the abdominal cavity.

The esophagus passes through an opening in the diaphragm called the hiatus. Therefore, a hiatus hernia occurs at the esophageal opening.

The hiatus opening in the diaphragm separates the chest and abdominal cavity. Usually, the esophagus goes through hiatus and attaches to the stomach, but in an initial hernia, the stomach bulges up in the chest through the opening.

It’s important that you read about the symptoms of hiatal hernia to configure your issue.

Before we get started, you should also read : What Does A Hernia Feel Like?: All About Hernia

Hiatal Hernia
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Table of Contents

Symptoms of hiatal hernia

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It’s rare for fixed Hiatal hernias to cause symptoms. If you experience any symptoms, they’re usually caused by stomach acid, bile, or air entering your esophagus.

Many people with hiatal hernia may have such symptoms:

  • Bloating
  • Heartburn
  • Bad taste in the mouth
  • Upset stomach and vomiting
  • Severe pain in the chest or abdomen
  • Can’t pass gas
  • Similar to GERD- Most cases are asymptomatic
  • Anemia
  • Difficulty in swallowing
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Chest pain

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Causes of hiatal hernia

The actual cause of Hiatal hernias is not known. However, injury or other damage may weaken muscle tissue in some people, making it possible for the belly to move through the diaphragm.

  • Unknown causes
  • Obesity
  • Coughing
  • Pregnancy
  • A wrong diet with excess white flour, refined sugar, and products like cake, biscuits bread.

Read: Partial Intestinal Obstruction

Let’s see how many types of Hiatal hernia can be shown?

Types of hiatal hernia

There are two main types of hiatus hernias:

  • Sliding
  • Paraoesophageal

In this type, the stomach and esophagus both join and slides up in the chest through the chest. It is the standard type of hernia.

Gastroesophageal junction and fungus of stomach slide through the esophageal hiatus.

The paraesophageal hernia is not common in that stomach to stay in its usual locations, but the hiatus hernia squeezes the stomach.

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Find out the type of hiatal hernia you have and treat it accordingly. For Paraoesophageal hernia, I recommend Designs for Health GastroMend HP Supplement for optimal relief from digestive discomfort.

Risk for hiatal hernia

Factors that increase your risk of a hiatal hernia include:

  • Increased intra-abdominal pressure.
  • Increased age
  • Congenital weakness.
  • Forced recumbent position.
  • You may not avoid a hiatal hernia entirely, but you can avoid making a hernia worse by:
  • Losing excess weight
  • Not straining during bowel movements
  • Getting help when lifting heavy objects
  • Avoiding tight belts and certain abdominal exercises

Can you feel a hiatal hernia with your fingers?

Severe cough, severe blows in the abdomen; Tight clothing, obesity, and poor posture can contribute to the development of this problem. The easiest way to diagnose a hiatal hernia is to keep your fingers from top to bottom. Then, breathe in and feel your abdomen expand.

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Now this question must be wondering on your mind how to diagnose it? Read the following section to get your answer.


To Diagnosis hiatal hernia to testing a doctor includes:

Barium is swallowed

Your doctor will give you a fluid that will show up on an X-ray and detect your esophagus and stomach.

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Your doctor cuts a long, thin tube down your throat. Then, the end cardio will check by showing the inside of your esophagus and stomach.

Esophageal manometry

A different tube is inserted down your throat to check the pressure on your esophagus when you eat anything.

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Treatment of hiatal hernia

If the patient is not responding to the medical treatment, Nissen fundoplication might be the best treatment.

Nissen fundoplication:

In this treatment, thoracic or abdominal part anchors the lower esophageal sphincter by wrapping a portion of the stomach around it to anchor it in place.

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Belsey fundoplication  

This operation involves a 270` wrap to reduce the incidence of gas bloating and postoperative dysphasia. It also is preferred when minimal esophageal dysmotility is suspected.

Also see: Gastro Intestinal Bleeding: Symptoms, Causes, Test and Treatment

Hiatal hernia repair

Hernia repair is a surgical treatment to repair a hernia near the groin or upper thigh. A femoral hernia is a tissue that protrudes from a space in the groin.

In hernia repair, the surgeon opens the femoral duct and places the lump of fatty tissue back into the abdomen. Afterward, the surgeon closes the canal with a mesh plug and repairs the space that the hernia lets through.

Must read: Abnormal Uterine Bleeding (AUB): Cause, symptoms ,Types, Treatment, Medication

A gastroenterologist who is well experienced in making hernia surgery is the right doctor for hernia repair.

Hernia repair has a high potential for long-term positive outcomes. In general, patients with undiagnosed hernias do well.

In most cases, hernia patients return to their routine after two to four weeks.

Lifestyle changes

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In addition to making comforts to what you should eat and how you cook, changing certain lifestyle habits may lessen heartburn symptoms too, including:

  • Do not take water between meals; this aids digestion; besides reducing the incidences of heartburn, drinking water with a meal increases the overall weight in the stomach slows the digestive juices by diluting the digestive juices.
  • Take small frequent meals instead of a few large ones.
  • Drink raw juices from fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Allow the hot drinks to cool a little before drinking.
  • Avoid specific medication if possible that influences heartburn.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you feel a hiatal hernia?

Most of the time, Hiatal hernias are small. They might not feel at all. But if the hernia is larger, it could force the opening in your diaphragm to become larger. At that point, the entire stomach and its organs are in danger of sliding up into your chest.

What does a hiatal hernia feel like?

The easiest way to feel a hiatal hernia is to place your fingers on your upper belly below the sternum. Then, take a deep inhalation and feel if your abs expand.

What does a hiatal hernia look like?

The hernia looks like a bulge or bumps in the scrotum. Standing down with force will often make the bulge more noticeable. The bulge typically takes time to arise, but it can form unexpectedly after coughing, lifting heavy weights, straining, bending, or laughing.

Where do you feel hiatal hernia pain?

A hiatal hernia causes chest or upper abdominal pain when the stomach becomes trapped above the diaphragm through the narrow esophageal hiatus.

What does a hiatal hernia feel like in a woman?

Chest or stomach pain. You feel full immediately after eating. Difficulty breathing. Vomiting of blood or black stools may indicate gastrointestinal bleeding.

Read: How To Detox Your Body From Drugs?


A hiatal hernia occurs when the abdomen pushes into a narrow part of the diaphragm.

Rarely causes symptoms, but some people feel acid reflux and heartburn. Balancing the diet and taking antacids or alginate products can usually help reduce it.

In rare, severe cases, surgery can help treat a herniated hernia. In addition, specific actions, such as parasitic treatment, can be repaired and effective.

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