That’s what my Gastroenterologist told me after he found my hiatal hernia recently.
For several months I’d been having some unexplained pressure in my chest. Being a heart patient, I was concerned it was something related to that, but numerous cardiac tests ruled that out. My fantastic cardiologist at Oklahoma Heart Hospital said it may be related to my digestive tract.
Back on March 14th, I went in for an Esophagogastroduodenoscopy. Whew… that’s an extremely long word.
Basically, I’m knocked out and a scope with a camera is put down my throat to take pictures of my esophagus, stomach and intestinal lining. However, in my case, my stomach “greeted the scope” and wasn’t going to allow it to go past my esophagus, prompting my doctor to say I had the “most impressive” hiatal hernia he had ever seen. I have pictures, but I will spare you. You can thank me later.
According to Wikipedia, a hiatal hernia is a “protrusion of the upper part of the stomach into the thorax through a tear or weakness in the diaphragm.” Yep… my stomach is creeping far up into my esophagus, which has been causing all my symptoms! That combined with the fact that I also suffer from GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease), I’ve been miserable! Fortunately, I’ve been taking the prescription Dexilant which neutralizes the acid in my stomach to prevent heart burn and more damage in my esophagus.
I went back for a follow-up appointment today and I will be meeting with a surgeon to discuss surgical options. Geez.
Until next time…