See below. The esophageal hiatus is an anatomical feature traversed by the esophagus on its way from the chest to the abdomen. When muscles and ligaments that define the boundaries of the hiatus weaken or become lax, the upper stomach may transiently or permanently reside in the chest. This is a hiatal hernia. Uncommonly, the entire stomach or other organs (colon, small bowel, spleen) may herniate as well. .
A hole in diaphragm. A hiatal hernia is when a part of the stomach comes up through a hole in the diaphragm into the chest. The diaphragm is a thin muscle that helps us breath and separates the chest cavity from the abdominal cavity. The most common type of hiatal hernia can cause reflux or heartburn. This is treated with medication and sometimes laparoscopic or endoscopic surgery.
Hernia in diaphragm. A hiatal hernia is a hernia in the diaphragm. The diaphragm is a muscle separating your chest from your abdomen. There is a natural hole where your esophagus passes through from your chest into your abdmoen. If the hole enlarges, the stomach can come up through the hole and into your chest. This is a hiatal hernia.