If hiccups continue to the point that you visit your health care provider, a medical history will be taken and a physical examination will be performed.
Medical history questions may include:
- Do you get hiccups easily?
- How long has this episode of hiccups lasted?
- Did you recently eat something hot or spicy?
- Did you recently drink carbonated beverages?
- Have you been exposed to any fumes?
- What have you tried to relieve the hiccups?
- What has been effective for you in the past?
- How effective was the attempt?
- Did the hiccups stop for a while and then restart?
- Do you have other symptoms?
Diagnostic tests are rarely needed unless a disease or disorder is suspected as the cause.
To treat persistent hiccups, the health care provider may perform gastric lavage or massage of the carotid sinus in the neck. Do not try carotid massage by yourself. This must be done by a health care provider.
If hiccups continue, medicines may help. Tube insertion (nasogastric intubation) may also help.
In very rare cases, if medicines or other methods do not work, treatment such as phrenic nerve block may be tried. The phrenic nerve controls the diaphragm.