SOVEREIGN, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SOVEREIGN, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Hiatus hernia. Coloured X-ray of a side-view of a patient with a hiatus hernia (lower right). A hernia is the protrusion of an organ or tissue through an abnormal opening. In this case part of the stomach is protruding into the chest cavity through the hole, known as the hiatus, that the oesophagus normally passes through. Hiatus hernias are extremely common and usually produce no symptoms. In severe cases they may cause gastro- oesophageal reflux, resulting in heartburn. Before the X-ray the patient was given a barium meal to highlight any anomalies.
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