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Giant hiatus hernia presenting as a chronic cough masking a sinister diagnosis
  1. Navin Mukundu Nagesh1,
  2. Dixon Osilli2 and
  3. David Khoo2
  1. 1General Surgery, Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust, Exeter, Devon, UK
  2. 2General Surgery, Queen's Hospital, Romford, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Navin Mukundu Nagesh; navinmukundunagesh{at}


We present a case of an 82-year-old gentleman with an 18-month history of productive cough. Urgent CT scan of the thorax revealed type 1 hiatus hernia (HH). The patient was managed conservatively with lifestyle modifications to help his reflux symptomology. The patient subsequently presented with acute shortness of breath and vomiting. Repeat CT scan reported a giant incarcerated HH (15 cm). Endoscopy revealed an incidental finding of a 3 cm polypoid lesion in the oesophagus at the level of the carina and histology of biopsies reported an invasive adenocarcinoma. During admission, the patient unfortunately had a hospital acquired infection and cardiac complications which prevented surgical intervention. Patients with suspected HH should be investigated thoroughly with imaging studies including chest X-ray, CT or MRI alongside oesophageal manometry and gastroscopy. Endoscopic evaluation is particularly important as these patients are at higher risk of Barrett’s oesophagus and invasive malignancy.

  • general surgery
  • gastrointestinal surgery
  • cancer intervention

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  • Contributors NMN, DO and DK were all involved with the clinical management of this patient. NMN conducted the literature review and drafting of the manuscript. DO and DK were involved in refining and ensuring clinical accuracy prior to submission.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.