Repair of Diaphragmatic Hernias

Diaphragmatic hernia repair is surgery to correct a birth defect called a diaphragmatic hernia. The diaphragm is a large dome-shaped muscle that separates the chest cavity (where your heart and lungs are) from the belly area.


The diaphragm is a very important muscle for breathing. Diaphragmatic hernias in babies are vary rare, and are almost always found soon after birth.

A diaphragmatic hernia is an opening or tear in the diaphragm. In a child born with a diaphragmatic hernia, the organs from the belly (stomach, spleen, liver, and intestines) may go up into the chest cavity where the lungs are. These abdominal organs take up the space and prevent the lung from growing normally. As a result, the lung stays too small for children to breathe on their own when they are born.


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