7 doctors weighed in:
Is there a difference between GERD and a hiatus hernia?
7 doctors weighed in

4 doctors agree
In brief: Yes
Gerd is gastroesophageal reflux disease or reflux.
You can have reflux and not a hiatal hernia. You can also have a hiatal hernia, which could make your reflux worse. A hernia is an enlarged opening in the diaphragm where the esophagus comes through into the abdominal cavity. With a hh, the stomach can slide up into the chest. You can have a hh without reflux. Most often, they go together.

In brief: Yes
Gerd is gastroesophageal reflux disease or reflux.
You can have reflux and not a hiatal hernia. You can also have a hiatal hernia, which could make your reflux worse. A hernia is an enlarged opening in the diaphragm where the esophagus comes through into the abdominal cavity. With a hh, the stomach can slide up into the chest. You can have a hh without reflux. Most often, they go together.
Dr. Scott Grover
Dr. Scott Grover
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Dr. Howard Hack
Internal Medicine
2 doctors agree
In brief: Yes
A hiatus hernia is the stomach protruding up in to the chest above the bottom of the lungs.
This is a common contributing factor to gerd. Gerd is the presence of stomach acid for extended periods of time in the esophagus (swallowing tube) leading to symptoms such as heartburn, coughing or a sensation of fullness in the throat.

In brief: Yes
A hiatus hernia is the stomach protruding up in to the chest above the bottom of the lungs.
This is a common contributing factor to gerd. Gerd is the presence of stomach acid for extended periods of time in the esophagus (swallowing tube) leading to symptoms such as heartburn, coughing or a sensation of fullness in the throat.
Dr. Howard Hack
Dr. Howard Hack
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1 comment
Dr. Barry Rosen
In my experience, people use these two terms interchangeably, when they really are referring to heartburn secondary to GERD. as Dr. Hack states, many people with hiatal hernias do not have GERD, and many GERD patients do not have a hiatal hernia. Unlike most hernias, hiatal hernias rarely require surgical repair.
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