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Mesh Surgery For Hernia - All You Must Know!

Written and reviewed by
MBBS, MS- General Surgery, FIAGES-Advanced Laparoscopy, Assistant professor in surgery, consultant surgeon
General Surgeon, Bangalore  •  25 years experience
Mesh Surgery For Hernia - All You Must Know!

When an organ or fatty tissue is squeezed through a hole (weak spot) in the connective tissue or a surrounding muscle then it causes a hernia. Usually, hernia happens at the abdominal wall and sometimes it can be seen as an external bulge.

There are various types of hernia which include:

● Inguinal Hernia (happens in the inner groin).
● Incisional Hernia (develops through a scar or an incision in the abdomen).
● Umbilical Hernia (develops at the belly button).
Femoral Hernia (develops in the outer groin or upper thigh area).
● Ventral Hernia (develops in the general ventral or abdominal wall).
● Hiatal Hernia (develops inside the abdomen, beside the upper diaphragm or stomach).

The most common cause of hernia is the combination of pressure and opening of connective tissue or weakness of the muscle. Anything that escalates the abdominal pressure can lead to a hernia, including lifting heavy weights, constipation, persistent sneezing or coughing, obesity, and diarrhea. Overexertion, poor nutrition, and smoking can also weaken the muscles and can increase the possibility of a hernia.

Mesh Surgery 
Surgical mesh is used to supply extra support to the damaged or weakened tissue. It is a medical device, usually made out of either animal tissue (from skin or intestine) or synthetic material. Surgical mesh of synthetic material can be made in non-knitted sheet forms or in the knitted mesh. The synthetic material used for making a surgical mesh can be absorbable, non-absorbable material, or a combination of both.

Surgical mesh made out of animal tissue is disinfected and processed in a way that makes it suitable for implantation. These are absorbable and mostly made from the tissues of pig or cow.
Absorbable mesh degrades and loses its strength over time. It is not made to supply
long-term support to the restored site.

On the other hand, non–absorbable mesh remains in the body for a long duration and is accounted for as a permanent implant. It provides permanent strength for restoring hernia.

In Hernioplasty or the mesh surgery for a hernia, the muscle opening is not stitched shut, instead it is covered with a sterile, flat mesh which is mostly made of synthetic or animal tissue. Small cuts are made around the hole in the shape of the mesh and the patch is stitched into the healthy surrounding tissues. The weak or damaged tissues around the hernia use the mesh, as support to regrow.

Recovery
Usually it takes up to 4 to 6 weeks to recover completely from mesh surgery. However, one can get back to his/her normal routine within 2 weeks post the surgery. There are certain precautions that one should undertake to avoid any complications. One should avoid heavy weight lifting, heavy exercises, stretching, and running. These precautions include diet modifications too. One should avoid consuming heavy fatty food and meat.

Takeaway
A hernia can be caused by a number of reasons and mesh surgery is a medical procedure helps to treat this problem. One should not avoid the treatment of hernia as the early treatment reduces the complications.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
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