Constant Hiccups

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Reviewed By:

Aiko Yoshioka

Aiko Yoshioka, MD (Gastroenterology)

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  • Hiccups aren't stopping

  • Hiccups disturbing me

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Content updated on Sep 6, 2022

About the symptom

It refers to frequent repeated spasms of the diaphragm paired with a ‘hic’ sound from the vocal cords closing.

When to see a doctor

Seek professional care if you experience any of the following symptoms

  • Blurring of vision

  • Muscle weakness in the limbs

  • Numbness / sensory disorder

  • Unilateral blindness

  • Numbness of lower limbs

  • Dysphagia

  • Altered mental status (delirium)

  • Involuntary movements

  • Impossible to walk normally

  • Visual field defect

  • Disorder of consciousness

  • Abnormal sensation (tingling, prickling)

  • Slurred speech

  • Seizure attack

  • Head injury

Possible causes

  • Neuromyelitis Optica (NMO)

    Neuromyelitis optica (NMO) is a rare condition where the immune system damages the spinal cord and the nerves of the eyes (optic nerves).

  • Multiple sclerosis (MS)

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a potentially disabling disease of the brain and spinal cord (central nervous system), which may lead to permanent damage or deterioration of the nerves.

Related serious diseases

  • Cerebral infarction

    Cerebral infarction is the term given to damage to brain tissue as a result of stroke. Cerebral infarction occurs due to reduced blood supply and oxygen delivery to the brain. This results in the death of brain cells and brain damage. It is usually caused by a blood clot or fatty/ cholesterol plaques blocking a blood vessel to the brain, but can also happen if a blood vessel ruptures and bleeds into the brain.

  • Cerebral hemorrhage
  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH)

Questions your doctor may ask about this symptom

Your doctor may ask these questions to check for this symptom

  • Do you have hiccups that are frequent or do not stop?

  • Do you have a cough?

  • Do you have any chest pain?

  • Do you have headaches or does your head feel heavy?

  • Are you breathless or having hard time breathing?

Other Related Symptoms

Symptoms from the same body system / part


  • Rouse S, Wodziak M. Intractable Hiccups. Curr Neurol Neurosci Rep. 2018 Jun 22;18(8):51. doi: 10.1007/s11910-018-0856-0. PMID: 29934880.

  • Steger M, Schneemann M, Fox M. Systemic review: the pathogenesis and pharmacological treatment of hiccups. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2015 Nov;42(9):1037-50. doi: 10.1111/apt.13374. Epub 2015 Aug 25. PMID: 26307025.

  • Leung AKC, Leung AAM, Wong AHC, Hon KL. Hiccups: A Non-Systematic Review. Curr Pediatr Rev. 2020;16(4):277-284. doi: 10.2174/1573396316666200508112951. PMID: 32384036.

  • Bredenoord AJ. Management of belching, hiccups, and aerophagia. Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2013 Jan;11(1):6-12. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2012.09.006. Epub 2012 Sep 13. PMID: 22982101.

  • Kohse EK, Hollmann MW, Bardenheuer HJ, Kessler J. Chronic Hiccups: An Underestimated Problem. Anesth Analg. 2017 Oct;125(4):1169-1183. doi: 10.1213/ANE.0000000000002289. PMID: 28759492.

Reviewed By:

Aiko Yoshioka

Aiko Yoshioka, MD (Gastroenterology)

From our team of 50+ doctors

Just 3 minutes.
Developed by doctors.

Ubie is supervised by 50+ medical experts worldwide

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