JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Hiatus hernia. Illustration of a hiatus hernia, showing gastro-oesophageal reflux. Here, the junction between the oesophagus (at top) and the stomach (bottom) is seen. The diaphragm is the red structure running diagonally from lower left to right. Hiatus hernia is the condition in which the stomach protrudes through the diaphragm into the chest cavity. This results in the contents of the stomach (acidic gastric juices, yellow) passing abnormally back up the oesophagus. It is known as gastro-oesophageal reflux. Reflux may cause heart- burn and inflammation of the oesophagus. Treatment involves avoiding large meals, stopping smoking, weight loss, and the use of antacid drugs.
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