Morgagni hernia

Last revised by Mostafa El-Feky on 10 Oct 2022

Morgagni hernias (alternative plural: herniae) are one of the congenital diaphragmatic hernias (CDHs) and are characterized by herniation through the foramen of Morgagni. When compared to Bochdalek hernias, Morgagni hernias tend to be:

  • anterior
  • more often right-sided (~90%)
  • small
  • rare (~2% of CDH9
  • at low risk of prolapse

Only ~30% of patients are symptomatic. Newborns may present with respiratory distress at birth similar to a Bochdalek hernia. Additionally, recurrent chest infections and gastrointestinal symptoms have been reported in those with previously undiagnosed Morgagni hernia.

Morgagni hernias most often contain omental fat, but transverse colon (60%), stomach (12%) and small intestine may be included within the hernia 9

Some sources recommend laparoscopic surgical repair, even in asymptomatic patients, to avoid the risk of strangulation of the hernia contents 6.

Giovanni Battista Morgagni (1682-1771) was an Italian anatomist and pathologist 8

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: illustration
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  • Case 1
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  • Case 9: adult presentation
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  • Case 10: with left liver lobe
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  • Case 15
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