Hernia Surgery

A hernia is a hole or an area of weakness in muscle that allows an organ or other bodily tissue to bulge through it. There are many types of hernias. Hernias may be barely noticeable or life-threatening, depending on their size and which organs are involved. In some cases, hernia surgery is performed to remove the annoying or unsightly bulge; in other cases, severe organ damage can occur if surgery is not performed immediately to repair the problem. A hernia can happen just about anywhere in the body. The most common areas are the abdomen and the groin. Most hernias can be repaired with minimally invasive techniques. The most common types of hernias include:

  1. Inguinal – one of the two types of hernias in the groin
  2. Femoral – the second of two types of hernias in the groin
  3. Incisional – forms at the site of a surgical incision
  4. Epigastric – abdominal hernia between the navel and the chest
  5. Umbilical – forms near the navel, or bellybutton
  6. Hiatal – allows the stomach to shift upward into the chest cavity

FAQ

How do you get inguinal hernias?

Inguinal hernias are common and can occur in a person of any age, with any lifestyle. In some cases, patients may report a physical activity, such as lifting or moving a heavy object, associated with their hernia. They may have felt a tear or burning sensation in the groin at the time of this activity. Most likely, the patient always had a hernia, though occult or asymptomatic, and the strenuous activity resulted in further opening of the hole, or more content pushed through the hole. Most inguinal hernias are asymptomatic (no pain or discomfort). There may be a bulge in the area of the groin. Also, most of the time, the bulge is reducible.

What activities should be restricted with a hernia?

Most activities, including sit-ups, bench press, weight lifting, dead lifts, and other exercises have not been shown to increase abdominal pressure and thus not increase the risk of hernia formation. Patients who exercise regularly are less likely to have hernias, especially among women. Yoga and Pilates are especially great for abdominal core and pelvic floor strengthening. Cycling and most gym exercises are also helpful. Instead, the patient with hernia should not practise crossfit-type exercises, as they tend to involve a lot of jumping, leg squats, and rapid movements with weights. Exercise is protective of hernias and in many cases can strengthen the pelvic floor and help reduce symptoms of hernias.

How do you Diagnose a Sports Hernia?

The symptoms of sports hernia can also be vague, with athletes unsure why they have suddenly or gradually seen a drop in their athletic performance. Symptoms of sports hernia may include one or more of the following: unilateral, sudden and severe groin pain, groin pain that goes away with rest (but returns during sports activity), pain that only appears during twisting movements, pain associated with other movements that involve the deep abdominal muscles, groin pain that gradually increases from intermittent to constant, and/or pain that develops to the point playing sports becomes impossible. Diagnosing sports hernia is very challenging. Through careful history documentation and physical examination followed by dynamic ultrasonography.

How would it be possible to diagnose an inguinal hernia?

A detailed clinical history is needful. Most men will first complain of a bulge in their groin. A physical examination will help confirm this. Women with inguinal hernias more commonly present with groin pain than with a bulge. These are sometimes referred to as hidden hernias. The pain is felt at or above the level of the groin. Half of the patients will have pain that may radiate up to the hip area, around to the lower back, into the testicle or vagina, to the scrotum or labia, down the front of the leg, and/or to the upper inner thigh region. Symptoms can range from a dull discomfort to a disabling searing pain. The size of the hernia does not correlate with the severity of the pain. To confirm that, smaller the hernia, the more pain associated with the pain. Most patients with inguinal hernias have activity-related symptoms. Any activity that places extra pressure onto the inguinal canal and pelvic floor can theoretically cause pain at the hernia. This includes prolonged standing, prolonged sitting, bending, getting in and out of bed, getting in and out of the car, coughing, laughing. Sexual intercourse and/or orgasm may be painful. Nausea and/or bloating are common complaints associated with hernias.

Do you have an inguinal pain?

Groin (inguinal) discomfort or pain may be worse when you bend or lift. Although you may have pain or discomfort in the scrotum, many hernias do not cause any pain. You may have sudden pain, nausea, and vomiting if part of the intestine becomes trapped (strangulated) in the hernia. Other symptoms of a hernia include: heaviness, swelling, and a tugging or burning sensation in the area of the hernia, scrotum, or inner thigh. Males may have a swollen scrotum, and females may have a bulge surrounding the vagina. Discomfort and aching that are relieved only when you lie down. This is often the case as the hernia grows larger.

Can indirect inguinal hernia pain radiate to inner thigh?

Yes, half of the patients will have pain that may radiate up to the hip area, around to the lower back, into the testicle or vagina, to the scrotum or labia, down the front of the leg, and/or to the upper inner thigh region. Symptoms can range from a dull discomfort to a disabling searing pain. The size of the hernia does not correlate with the severity of the pain. To confirm that, smaller the hernia, the more pain associated with the pain. Most patients with inguinal hernias have activity-related symptoms. Any activity that places extra pressure onto the inguinal canal and pelvic floor can theoretically cause pain at the hernia. This includes prolonged standing, prolonged sitting, bending, getting in and out of bed, getting in and out of the car, coughing, laughing. Sexual intercourse and/or orgasm may be painful. Nausea and/or bloating are common complaints associated with hernias.

How much pain after inguinal hernia open surgery?

Most people who have open hernia repair surgery are able to go home the same day. Recovery time is about 3 weeks. You most likely can return to light activity after 3 weeks. Strong exercise should wait until 6 weeks after surgery. You will probably be able to drive again in about 2 weeks or when you have no pain in your groin. You can have sexual intercourse in about 3 weeks after surgery.

How Long before to have Sex after hernia repair?

Most people who have open hernia repair surgery are able to go home the same day. Recovery time is about 3 weeks. You most likely can return to light activity after 3 weeks. Strong exercise should wait until 6 weeks after surgery. You will probably be able to drive again in about 2 weeks or when you have no pain in your groin. You can have sexual intercourse in about 3 weeks after surgery.

How Long before to start an ordinary life?

Most people who have open hernia repair surgery are able to go home the same day. Recovery time is about 3 weeks. You most likely can return to light activity after 3 weeks. Strong exercise should wait until 6 weeks after surgery. You will probably be able to drive again in about 2 weeks or when you have no pain in your groin. You can have sexual intercourse in about 3 weeks after surgery.

How Long before to start on heavy lifting?

Most people who have open hernia repair surgery are able to go home the same day. Recovery time is about 3 weeks. You most likely can return to light activity after 3 weeks. Strong exercise should wait until 6 weeks after surgery. You will probably be able to drive again in about 2 weeks or when you have no pain in your groin.

How long did you all stay in hospital for following this type of procedure?

Most people who have open hernia repair surgery are able to go home the same day. Recovery time is about 3 weeks.

Can inguinal hernias repair itself?

Surgery is the only treatment and cure for inguinal hernia. It is recommended to repair a hernia with surgery because it prevents strangulation, which occurs when a loop of intestine is trapped tightly in a hernia and the blood supply is cut off, which kills the tissue. Strangulation requires urgent surgery, although the condition is rare in adults.

Is it better mesh or no mesh for hernia repair?

Open surgery for hernia repair is safe. The recurrence rate (hernias that require two or more repairs) is low when open hernia repair is done by experienced surgeons using mesh patches. Synthetic patches are now widely used for hernia repair in both open and laparoscopic surgery. There is evidence that the use of open mesh repair is associated with a reduction in the risk of recurrence of 50-75%. There is also some evidence of quicker return to work and of lower rates of persisting pain following mesh repair.