Dyspnoea and constipation: rare case of large bowel obstruction secondary to an incarcerated Morgagni hernia

BMJ Case Rep. 2019 Jun 8;12(6):e229507. doi: 10.1136/bcr-2019-229507.


Incarcerated diaphragmatic hernias are often challenging to diagnose. 1 Patients often present with non-specific abdominal symptoms, and barring an imaging modality that confirms herniation of intra-abdominal contents, there is no investigation sensitive or specific enough to identify it. It is a rare cause of mechanical bowel obstruction that clinicians should be aware of. This report describes a case of an 81-year-old man who presented to the emergency department with ongoing dyspnoea and constipation secondary to a partial large bowel obstruction due to an incarcerated Morgagni hernia. This case highlights the non-specific symptoms of this condition that often leads to a delayed diagnosis and aims to increase the awareness among clinicians.

Keywords: general surgery; primary care.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Constipation / etiology*
  • Delayed Diagnosis
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Dyspnea / etiology*
  • Emergency Service, Hospital
  • Hernias, Diaphragmatic, Congenital / complications
  • Hernias, Diaphragmatic, Congenital / diagnostic imaging*
  • Hernias, Diaphragmatic, Congenital / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Laparoscopy
  • Male
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Treatment Outcome