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Can sneezing aggravate hernia pain?

Q: I was diagnosed with hiatus hernia a couple of years ago. Recently, I have noticed that after sneezing there is severe pain in the centre of my chest which seems to radiate to my neck and even up to my ear. This lasted for several minutes. I noticed that I also lost my voice. It was very painful and uncomfortable. What could be the cause?

A:If you had a hiatus hernia, it is possible that with sneezing, there is an increase in intra-abdominal pressure which causes gastro-oesophageal reflux, leading to your thoracic pain. Further, Gastro-oesophageal reflux disorder, or GERD, or LPR (laryngopharyngeal reflux) is a recognized cause of hoarseness. You need to consult a gastroenterologist to sort out the problem.

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