How Long Does Hiatal Hernia Surgery Take?

How Long Does Hiatal Hernia Surgery Take?

If you research, you will find that a hiatal hernia is quite common among people around the world. Usually, it begins with mild signs and symptoms and can be easily managed with proper medications. But, there are some patients who undergo serious symptoms and the medication therapy might not yield any positive results. In such a case, surgery might be a viable solution available. Are you concerned how long does hiatal hernia surgery take?

About Hiatal Hernia

Let us get a picture about a hiatal hernia. When a portion of your stomach stretches out through the diaphragm and into the chest, it is considered as a hiatal hernia. Such a condition can give rise to high acid reflux and GERD symptoms. It has been found that in the majority of the cases, the symptoms are well treated with medications. When medications don’t work, surgery is the option practiced by doctors.

How can Surgery be Helpful?

Before you get to know about the whole process, you should get a clear idea about the intention of the hiatal hernia surgery. Surgery is helpful as it can heal a hiatal hernia by forcing your stomach back into the position and making a smaller diaphragm opening. The surgical method will involve the removal of hernia sacs or even remodeling the esophageal sphincter.

Severe Hiatal Hernia Surgery Demand for Surgery

In case, you have been diagnosed with a hiatal hernia and worried about the time taken to hiatal hernia surgery, you have news. Every hiatal hernia case doesn’t demand for invasive treatment. Basically, the surgical method is only for those patients who have severe symptoms and the drug therapy hasn’t responded. Some of the severe symptoms include:

  • Scarring
  • Bleeding
  • Esophagus getting narrowed down
  • Ulcers

If you have any of the above mentioned severe symptoms of a hiatal hernia, surgery is the option. Don’t worry about the duration of hiatal hernia surgery. It has been found that the success rate of the surgery for a hiatal hernia is almost 90%. But, almost 30% patients who underwent the surgery suffer from the reflux symptoms return.

Preparing for Hiatal Hernia Surgery

Hiatal hernia surgery duration and the preparation method of surgery are informed by the doctor in full details. The preparation for the surgery includes:

  • Walking at least 2 to 3 miles every day before the surgery.
  • Breathing exercises several times in a day.
  • Avoid smoking absolutely for at least 4 weeks before the large hiatal hernia surgery.
  • Restriction on the consumption of non-steroid anti-inflammatories a week before the surgery takes place.
  • Avoiding the intake of clopidogrel or Plavix for seven days before the surgery.

You don’t have to consume the typical clear liquid diet in order to prepare for the surgery. But, you are restricted from eating and drinking for at least 12 hours prior to the surgery.

How Long Does Hiatal Hernia Surgery Take?

This is the question that seems to be bothering you, right? Well, the entire surgical process takes around 2 to 3 hours to complete. There are several methods via which the surgery can be performed. They are:

  • Laparoscopic repair
  • Open repair
  • Endoluminal fundoplication

How long does hiatal hernia surgery take? It differs based on each of the surgical methods mentioned.

The Recovery Process of the Hiatal Hernia Surgery

The recovery process might not be very comfortable. You will experience a burning pain or tingling sensation near the incision area. The good news is that the feeling gradually goes away. Moreover, over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen can be beneficial. The medication that you are prescribed must be taken only with food.

Life after hiatal hernia surgery needs to be cautious and careful. You have to make sure that the incision area is gently washed with water and soap on a regular basis. You have to make sure that you avoid taking hot tub and pool baths. Your diet is also restricted because you cannot let the stomach extend anymore. Instead of three large meals, you should go for four to six small meals. After the surgery, you will be on a liquid diet and gradually move to soft and solid food items.

There are Certain Elements that you Need to Avoid. They are:

  • Alcohol
  • Citrus fruits
  • Gas causing food items
  • Tomato products

A hiatal hernia after surgery is expected with a full recovery. Your doctor will suggest you with different coughing and breathing exercises in order to strengthen the diaphragm. It is recommended that you must perform the exercises on a regular basis as per the instructions of your doctor. The moment you feel the strength, you must start moving and walking so that there is no formation of blood clots in your legs.

The above information must have been helpful for you in order to understand about hiatal hernia surgery and the related information.

Medically Reviewed By
Dr. Kaushal M. Bhavsar (MBBS, MD)Assistant Professor in Pulmonary Medicine, GMERS Medical College, Ahmedabad