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Hernia, hiatus - Diagnosing a hiatus hernia

NHS Choices Medical Reference

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A hiatus hernia may be diagnosed by:

  • Endoscopy. This is the most common test for hiatus hernia. An endoscope (a long, tube-like viewing instrument that contains a video camera and light source) is passed down the oesophagus (gullet) into the stomach.
  • X-ray. You will swallow a watery paste made from barium sulphate. It is a heavy, odourless powder that is insoluble (does not dissolve) and is not poisonous. It coats the inside of the stomach and makes it easier to see the digestive system when an X-ray is performed.

Both procedures allow the doctor to check for evidence of a hiatus hernia.

Glossary

  • X-ray: An X-ray is a painless way of producing pictures of inside the body using radiation.
Medical Review: July 06, 2009
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