Objectives: The clinical relevance of small to moderate sliding hiatal hernias is controversial. The aims of the present study were to (1) investigate which symptoms are associated with sliding hiatal hernias and (2) define the length of a sliding hiatal hernia at which gastrointestinal symptoms occur. Methods: A study population representative of the general Swedish population answered a questionnaire regarding gastrointestinal symptoms and was investigated with an upper endoscopy. The length of any sliding hiatal hernia was measured. Results: Only reflux-related symptoms were associated with length of the hiatal hernia (acid regurgitation OR 1.46, CI 1.19–1.79, heartburn OR 1.27, CI 1.05–1.54), and the association did not become significant until an axial hiatal hernia length of 2 cm. Conclusions: Only reflux symptoms could be attributed to sliding hiatal hernias. Hiatal hernias less than 2 cm should be considered clinically insignificant.
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- sliding hiatal hernia
- gastroesophageal reflux
- gastroesophageal junction