Gastritis and stomach hernias can both cause a great deal of pain for those who suffer from them. These conditions have similar symptoms in many cases, and fortunately both are treatable. A common question people have who suffer from gastritis is whether or not gastritis can cause a stomach hernia. Though it would seem to be highly possible that this is the case, the reverse is actually what is true: a stomach hernia can cause gastritis, but gastritis does not cause a stomach hernia.
A stomach hernia, also known as a hiatal hernia, occurs when muscle tissue around the diaphragm weakens. Normally the esophagus will pass into the stomach through an opening called the hiatus. If the muscle tissue becomes weak, the opening widens. The stomach does not remain in place and pushes through the enlarged opening into the chest cavity.
Risk factors for hiatal hernias are obesity and being over the age of 50. Women are also more likely to develop them than men. Stomach hernias can be caused by an injury, being born having an unusually large hiatus, or constant pressure on the muscles surrounding the diaphragm and stomach regions. This usually occurs from coughing, vomiting, lifting heavy objects or straining during a bowel movement.
Gastritis is an inflammation of the lining of the stomach, caused by frequent use of NSAIDs or an H. pylori bacteria infection. The inflammation can also be triggered by excessive stomach acid, a common side effect of a stomach hernia. This does not occur in every case of a stomach hernia or gastritis, however. If a stomach hernia is contributing to or causing gastritis, treatment for the excessive acid through medication will usually clear the gastritis up quickly. The only effective treatment for a hernia is surgery, which may be recommended if the hernia is large and causing a serious obstruction. For small stomach hernias, no surgery is usually necessary.