Additional mechanisms of hiatal hernia recurrence and its prevention

S. K. Mittal, C. J. Filipi, P. I. Anderson, S. J. Fenton, J. E. Cummings, D. Cornet, T. H. Quinn, R. J. Fitzgibbons

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The conventional hiatal hernia repair is a tension repair. Large defects such as those associated with an intrathoracic stomach can have a high rate of recurrence resulting in esophageal symptoms and in some instances gastric strangulation. Numerous additive procedures are used to secure the stomach in the abdominal cavity including mesh buttressing, fundoplication, anterior abdominal wall gastropexy and fundus diaphragmatic suture fixation. The optimal repair is unknown primarily because crura closure failure is poorly understood. A literature review was used to determine the proven causes of hiatal hernia recurrence. Early postoperative vomiting, surgeon inexperience, short esophagus and no crus closure are documented causes. In a series of 19 hiatal hernia recurrence repairs from our institution, additional causes such as suture pull-out and trauma have been established as additional mechanisms of recurrence. Increased intra-abdominal pressure associated with motor vehicle accidents was the precipitating factor in 2/19 patients. Suggested methods for prevention of hiatal disruption and resultant hernia are proposed which include: a postoperative antiemetic regimen, restricted activity in the early postoperative period, an assessment technique for the short esophagus when utilizing a laparoscopic approach, crus closure calibration and inclusion of the diaphragmatic fascia when performing hiatal closure for large paraesophageal hernias and the short esophagus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)215-220
Number of pages6
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery


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