Disorder - Hernia, hiatal in dogOrgan Systems Involved
There is a small opening in the diaphragm (the sheet of muscle that divides the chest and abdominal cavities) to allow the oesophagus (the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach) to extend into the abdomen. A larger than normal opening can allow protrusion of any abdominal contents into the chest cavity.
The signs of hiatal hernia vary with the type of abdominal contents trapped in the chest cavity. The oesophagus may be compressed, causing clinical signs such as vomiting, regurgitation and excessive salivation. Other signs can be vomiting of blood, difficulties breathing (as the lungs are comressed by the abdominal contents) and weight loss. Dry food is more frequently vomited than canned food. Cardiac arrest can occur if the hernia is very large and abdominal organs exert a lot of pressure on the heart and major blood vessels. The disorder is present at birth in most affected dogs and symptoms usually arise within six months after weaning. Some puppies may 'grow out of' the disorder and at three to four months of age are symptom-free. Trauma can also cause this disease as the force of a severe blow (such as being hit by a car) can result in tearing of the diaphragm. Dogs with hiatal hernia are likely to have chronic inflammation in the oesophagus.
Dogs at Risk
Males are probably predisposed to this disease
Hernia, oesophageal hiatal in dog
Hernia, hiatal in dog
Further Reference Material [OMIA Number]