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Sports Hernia Tips

How Laparoscopy Can Help Manage Hernia?

Dr. Rahul Sinha 89% (10 ratings)
MBBS, DNB ( General Surgery )
General Surgeon, Delhi
How Laparoscopy Can Help Manage Hernia?

Laparoscopy surgery is a very vital component of the hernia repair. Studies have shown that many patients have a better outcome when they opt for laparoscopic surgery. Candidates eligible for this mode of surgery include those with bilateral inguinal hernias, ventral hernias, and recurrent hernia. People associated with athletics and other outdoor sports prefer to go for a laparoscopic hernia surgery as it ensures a speedy recovery and minimal tissue invasion (due to small incisions).

Laparoscopic hernia repair- inguinal
A laparoscopic surgery requires an incision of 1-2 cm at the belly (at the lower end). Two small punctures are done near the umbilicus. The punctures are done to make room for the cameras so that the surgeon is able to view the abdomen clearly. The smaller incisions allows the operating instrument to enter into the stomach.

The Procedure:
A balloon is placed in between the abdomen and the overlying muscle so that the peritoneum can be separated. When space is successfully made, the camera comes into the action to view the condition of a hernia. A hernia is pulled from its hole into the abdomen. Once the hole is detected, the defect of a hernia is fixed.

Laparoscopic hernia repair- incisional/ventral: Laparoscopic hernia repair is suitable for all types of a hernia such as an umbilical hernia, ventral hernia, recurrent umbilical hernia, epigastric hernia etc. Just like an inguinal hernia, A camera is placed into the abdomen through the muscles. Two small incisions are made for the operating instruments to get through. This is followed by the cutting of the tissue that is placed between a hernia and the intestine. The hole thus gets exposed. Through one of the laparoscopic ports, the hernia mesh gets rolled and is placed into the abdomen. A hernia is then pulled up and the mesh gets secured with 4 sutures. A special device is used to fix the healthy muscle.

Tension free repair: “Tension free” repair is often used to symbolize hernia surgery. A hernia is often triggered by the weakened muscles. Few surgeons endeavors to sew the muscle around the area of a hernia. Since the muscles surrounding the hernia are weak in the first place, they pull apart causing a recurrence of a hernia. To avoid this, most surgeons use a mesh to strengthen the cells around the hernia region. This procedure ensures that the muscles aren’t sewn but the mesh placed over the hole can prevent the muscle to push through the walls of the abdomen.

The use of mesh: There are some reservations about using the mesh in a hernia surgery. However, this is the safest and most appropriate way to perform a hernia laparoscopic surgery. The use of a mesh also negates the risk of open incisions and recurrence of a hernia.

1 person found this helpful

How Laparoscopy Can Help Manage Different Types of Hernia?

Dr. Aasim Anees Hussain 84% (15 ratings)
M.S, General Surgery, Bachelor of Medicine Bachelor of Surgery (M.B.B.S.), Medicine, Fellowship In Minimal Access Surgery, Fellowship In Laparoscopic & Robotic Onco-Surgery, FIAGES, Fellow in MInimally invasive HPB surgery
General Surgeon, Chennai
How Laparoscopy Can Help Manage Different Types of Hernia?

Laparoscopy surgery is a very vital component of the hernia repair. Studies have shown that many patients have a better outcome when they opt for laparoscopic surgery. Candidates eligible for this mode of surgery include those with bilateral inguinal hernias, ventral hernias, and recurrent hernia. People associated with athletics and other outdoor sports prefer to go for a laparoscopic hernia surgery as it ensures a speedy recovery and minimal tissue invasion (due to small incisions).

Laparoscopic hernia repair- inguinal
A laparoscopic surgery requires an incision of 1-2 cm at the belly (at the lower end). Two small punctures are done near the umbilicus. The punctures are done to make room for the cameras so that the surgeon is able to view the abdomen clearly. The smaller incisions allows the operating instrument to enter into the stomach.

The Procedure:
A balloon is placed in between the abdomen and the overlying muscle so that the peritoneum can be separated. When space is successfully made, the camera comes into the action to view the condition of a hernia. A hernia is pulled from its hole into the abdomen. Once the hole is detected, the defect of a hernia is fixed.

Laparoscopic hernia repair- incisional/ventral: Laparoscopic hernia repair is suitable for all types of a hernia such as an umbilical hernia, ventral hernia, recurrent umbilical hernia, epigastric hernia etc. Just like an inguinal hernia, A camera is placed into the abdomen through the muscles. Two small incisions are made for the operating instruments to get through. This is followed by the cutting of the tissue that is placed between a hernia and the intestine. The hole thus gets exposed. Through one of the laparoscopic ports, the hernia mesh gets rolled and is placed into the abdomen. A hernia is then pulled up and the mesh gets secured with 4 sutures. A special device is used to fix the healthy muscle.

Tension free repair: “Tension free” repair is often used to symbolize hernia surgery. A hernia is often triggered by the weakened muscles. Few surgeons endeavors to sew the muscle around the area of a hernia. Since the muscles surrounding the hernia are weak in the first place, they pull apart causing a recurrence of a hernia. To avoid this, most surgeons use a mesh to strengthen the cells around the hernia region. This procedure ensures that the muscles aren’t sewn but the mesh placed over the hole can prevent the muscle to push through the walls of the abdomen.

The use of mesh: There are some reservations about using the mesh in a hernia surgery. However, this is the safest and most appropriate way to perform a hernia laparoscopic surgery. The use of a mesh also negates the risk of open incisions and recurrence of a hernia.

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

3178 people found this helpful

Hernia Surgery - What You Need To Know About It?

Dr. Manish K. Gupta 93% (69 ratings)
F.I.A.G.E.S , MNAMS (Membership of The National Academy) (General Surgery), DNB (General Surgery), MBBS
General Surgeon, Delhi
Hernia Surgery - What You Need To Know About It?

Hernia is a small protrusion or escape of any structure or organ through nearby weak spot or muscle. There are several types of hernia like inguinal hernia (direct and indirect), femoral hernia, umbilical hernia, umbilical hernia, epigastria hernia and incision hernia. This hernia can be removed and relocated to its original position and secured with special type of hernia mesh to prevent the recurrence of hernia.

When hernia surgery is required?
Hernia is not a serious health issue that requires surgery immediately. But surgery is essential only during the following situation-

  1. Size of hernia is more than half an inch.
  2. Hernia causes severe pain and causes much physical discomfort.
  3. Hernia causes disfigurement.

Types:
There are two different methods used for hernia surgery:

  1. Open hernia repair: Open surgical incision is made near the herniated site and the surgical procedure is done and secured with a mesh work. This surgical procedure requires several preparatory measures to be done before surgery. There is also blood loss and recovery period after surgery is also more than other type of surgeries.
  2. Minimally invasive hernia repair: The surgery is done with a laparoscope which has small tiny camera, small synthetic hernia mesh and small tool with it. So the patient can return back to their normal routine earlier as the incision made is smaller.

Before undergoing hernia surgery:

  1. One week before surgery it is much essential to stop taking drugs that are causes the thinning of the blood. Drugs like aspirin should be stopped with the doctor’s advice.
  2. Stop herbal supplements and check the fitness of your cardio and diabetes
  3. Gain adequate knowledge about surgery and be prepared for the post surgical care

After hernia surgery:

  1. Avoid heavy weight lifting , exercises, and physical works with excessive strain few weeks after surgery
  2. Cough or laugh loud only with a support to the surgical site till one week after surgery. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a General Surgeon.
1916 people found this helpful

Hernia

Dr. Paras Shah 88% (139 ratings)
MBBS, FAACS(USA)
Sexologist, Ahmedabad

Do you know every *hernia* doesn't knock before occurring?

Some come in silently and cause damaging effects. Learn the symptoms carefully to notice any complication and get examined once you do.

2 people found this helpful

Hernia

Dr. Ashok Gupta 92% (5463 ratings)
MS - General Surgery, MBBS
General Surgeon, Delhi
Hernia

HERNIA

Description:

A hernia is a weakness or defect in the lining of the abdominal (belly) or pelvic (groin) wall. It can be present at birth or develop over the years.

Signs and Symptoms:
You may see or feel a lump under the skin or in males a bulge in the scrotum (this is usually intestine). This may present with straining while lifting heavy objects, during a bowel movement or urination. Coughing and sneezing may also produce a bulge. The lump may disappear when laying down or even with gentle pressure. A hernia can be present without an obvious lump. It can be painful or cause a burning sensation. Sometimes it may be present for years without any symptoms.

Treatment:
What should you do if you suspect that you have a hernia? There is no acceptable nonsurgical medical treatment for a hernia. The use of a truss (hernia belt) can help keep the hernia from bulging but eventually will fail. The truss also causes the formation of scar tissue around the hernia making the repair more difficult. Have your doctor perform an examination, because if the repair is delayed it can result in incarceration (intestine is stuck and cannot get back inside) or strangulation (intestine is stuck and develops gangrene). The latter is an emergency.

The hernia will not go away, it will only get bigger. The bigger the defect the bigger the operation required to fix it.

Under certain circumstances the hernia may be watched and followed closely by a physician. These situations are unique to those individuals who are high operative risks, ie, severe heart or lung disease, or bleeding problems. Of course, even in the high risk person, if the symptoms become severe or if strangulation occurs, then an operation must be performed.

Surgical Options:
What type of operation is best for you? There are two main options for hernia repair:

1) Open Repair: The traditional, open repair has been the gold standard for over 100 years. There are 5-10 different approaches and can be performed routinely with local and intravenous sedation. Open repair is generally painful with a relatively long recovery period.


2) Laparoscopic Repair: Laparoscopic repair has been developed over the last 10 years. It is usually performed under general anesthesia but spinal anesthesia is an option. Local anesthesia can be used under special circumstances. Benefits of Laparoscopic (laparoscopic) repair compared to the open repair are: shorter operative time, less pain, and shorter recovery period.

Laparoscopic Hernia Surgery:
For Laparoscopic hernia surgery a telescope attached to a camera is placed through a small opening under the belly button. Two other small cuts are made (each no larger than the diameter of an eraser on the end of a pencil) in the lower abdomen. The defect is covered with a mesh (synthetic material made from the same material that stitches are made from) and secured in position with other stitches/staples/titanium tacks or tissue glue.

Risks to Laparoscopic Hernia Surgery:
As with the open operation, bleeding and infection can occur. The risk of nerve injury appears to be less than in open repair, as does the potential for recurrences of a hernia.

After the Operation:
Usually you can be discharged home a few hours after the completion of the Laparoscopic hernia operation. Take it easy the first few days. Walking stairs is allowed, and walking outside (weather permitting) is encouraged. Taking a bath or shower 48 hours after the operation is permitted. Avoid driving for at least 3 days and any time while taking pain medication.

Remember to make a follow-up appointment with your surgeon 1-2 weeks following the operation. Seek medical attention sooner if you develop fever, bleeding, severe belly pain, excessive swelling or nausea and vomiting.

7 people found this helpful

Hernia Surgery: Quick Recovery Tips!

Dr. Harika Tirungari 89% (103 ratings)
MBBS Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, MS - General Surgery
General Surgeon, Hyderabad
Hernia Surgery: Quick Recovery Tips!

Recovery from a hernia after the surgery will need a time of approximately 2-3 weeks. The time for recovery also depends upon the surgery performed. An open surgery performed through a large incision across the region of a hernia will require a longer hospital stay and a longer time for recovery, whereas, in contrast, a laparoscopic surgery performed with 2-3 small incisions will heal faster and will need a shorter hospitalization.

The recovery process can be speeded up by taking appropriate care, and recovery tips for it are as follows:

  1. Medication should regularly be taken as recommended by the doctor to lessen the symptoms of the surgery.
  2. Wound care should be taken properly.
  3. Dressings should be kept clean and dry, and they need to be changed very frequently in order to avoid the infection.
  4. A persistent cough and sneezing need to be treated with the proper medication.
  5. Keep a pillow nearby.
  6. Every time while coughing and sneezing hold the pillow over the suture in order to prevent pressure on the sutures. 
  7. Use an abdominal binder of a proper size. It supports the abdominal muscle and maintains abdominal pressure.
  8. Use clothing which is expandable and has elastic waistbands whenever there is swelling.
  9. Swelling over the incision is a common complication after the surgery. Thus, the incision area should not be closed tightly by wearing tight clothing.
  10. Wearing expandable cloths will give more comfort and will not cause pain due to pressure. Take a stool softener before and after surgery.
  11. Constipation should be treated before the surgery and should be avoided after the surgery by using stool softeners.
  12. Straining for the stools will create pressure over the incision and hernia repair site and will delay the recovery.
  13. Eat healthy food. The food should be fiber-rich as it will help to improve the bowel movements, and it will avoid the risk of constipation.
  14. Drink plenty of water to avoid constipation and improve the bowel movement.
  15. Do not bend to pick up the things or maintain personal hygiene, i.e., cutting toenails as it will create pressure on the sutures and it may break open.
  16. Avoid lifting of any objects as it will create pressure on sutures and will increase the risk of rupture. After a certain period of time, lift only light items (less than 20 pounds), and always use back muscles and knees.
  17. Do moderate exercises, such as walking, as it will speed up the recovery. Do not start with heavy exercises.
  18. Smoking should be avoided after the surgery as it will improve breathing and blood circulation, which will help in the healing process.
3202 people found this helpful

Types of Hernia - How Laproscopy Can Help Manage?

Dr. Ashish Pitale 90% (10 ratings)
MBBS, MS - General Surgery, FRCS - General Surgery , Fellowship in Minimal Access Surgery
General Surgeon, Delhi
Types of Hernia - How Laproscopy Can Help Manage?

Laparoscopy surgery is a very vital component of the hernia repair. Studies have shown that many patients have a better outcome when they opt for laparoscopic surgery. Candidates eligible for this mode of surgery include those with bilateral inguinal hernias, ventral hernias, and recurrent hernia. People associated with athletics and other outdoor sports prefer to go for a laparoscopic hernia surgery as it ensures a speedy recovery and minimal tissue invasion (due to small incisions).

Laparoscopic hernia repair- inguinal
A laparoscopic surgery requires an incision of 1-2 cm at the belly (at the lower end). Two small punctures are done near the umbilicus. The punctures are done to make room for the cameras so that the surgeon is able to view the abdomen clearly. The smaller incisions allows the operating instrument to enter into the stomach.

The Procedure:
A balloon is placed in between the abdomen and the overlying muscle so that the peritoneum can be separated. When space is successfully made, the camera comes into the action to view the condition of a hernia. A hernia is pulled from its hole into the abdomen. Once the hole is detected, the defect of a hernia is fixed.

Laparoscopic hernia repair- incisional/ventral: Laparoscopic hernia repair is suitable for all types of a hernia such as an umbilical hernia, ventral hernia, recurrent umbilical hernia, epigastric hernia etc. Just like an inguinal hernia, A camera is placed into the abdomen through the muscles. Two small incisions are made for the operating instruments to get through. This is followed by the cutting of the tissue that is placed between a hernia and the intestine. The hole thus gets exposed. Through one of the laparoscopic ports, the hernia mesh gets rolled and is placed into the abdomen. A hernia is then pulled up and the mesh gets secured with 4 sutures. A special device is used to fix the healthy muscle.

Tension free repair: “Tension free” repair is often used to symbolize hernia surgery. A hernia is often triggered by the weakened muscles. Few surgeons endeavors to sew the muscle around the area of a hernia. Since the muscles surrounding the hernia are weak in the first place, they pull apart causing a recurrence of a hernia. To avoid this, most surgeons use a mesh to strengthen the cells around the hernia region. This procedure ensures that the muscles aren’t sewn but the mesh placed over the hole can prevent the muscle to push through the walls of the abdomen.

The use of mesh: There are some reservations about using the mesh in a hernia surgery. However, this is the safest and most appropriate way to perform a hernia laparoscopic surgery. The use of a mesh also negates the risk of open incisions and recurrence of a hernia. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a General Surgeon.

1936 people found this helpful

Types of Hernia - How Laparoscopy Can Help Treat It?

Dr. Swapnil Parakh 83% (10 ratings)
MS - General Surgery
General Surgeon, Nashik
Types of Hernia - How Laparoscopy Can Help Treat It?

Laparoscopy surgery is a very vital component of the hernia repair. Studies have shown that many patients have a better outcome when they opt for laparoscopic surgery. Candidates eligible for this mode of surgery include those with bilateral inguinal hernias, ventral hernias, and recurrent hernia. People associated with athletics and other outdoor sports prefer to go for a laparoscopic hernia surgery as it ensures a speedy recovery and minimal tissue invasion (due to small incisions).

Laparoscopic hernia repair- inguinal
A laparoscopic surgery requires an incision of 1-2 cm at the belly (at the lower end). Two small punctures are done near the umbilicus. The punctures are done to make room for the cameras so that the surgeon is able to view the abdomen clearly. The smaller incisions allows the operating instrument to enter into the stomach.

The Procedure:
A balloon is placed in between the abdomen and the overlying muscle so that the peritoneum can be separated. When space is successfully made, the camera comes into the action to view the condition of a hernia. A hernia is pulled from its hole into the abdomen. Once the hole is detected, the defect of a hernia is fixed.

Laparoscopic hernia repair- incisional/ventral: Laparoscopic hernia repair is suitable for all types of a hernia such as an umbilical hernia, ventral hernia, recurrent umbilical hernia, epigastric hernia etc. Just like an inguinal hernia, A camera is placed into the abdomen through the muscles. Two small incisions are made for the operating instruments to get through. This is followed by the cutting of the tissue that is placed between a hernia and the intestine. The hole thus gets exposed. Through one of the laparoscopic ports, the hernia mesh gets rolled and is placed into the abdomen. A hernia is then pulled up and the mesh gets secured with 4 sutures. A special device is used to fix the healthy muscle.

Tension free repair: “Tension free” repair is often used to symbolize hernia surgery. A hernia is often triggered by the weakened muscles. Few surgeons endeavors to sew the muscle around the area of a hernia. Since the muscles surrounding the hernia are weak in the first place, they pull apart causing a recurrence of a hernia. To avoid this, most surgeons use a mesh to strengthen the cells around the hernia region. This procedure ensures that the muscles aren’t sewn but the mesh placed over the hole can prevent the muscle to push through the walls of the abdomen.

The use of mesh: There are some reservations about using the mesh in a hernia surgery. However, this is the safest and most appropriate way to perform a hernia laparoscopic surgery. The use of a mesh also negates the risk of open incisions and recurrence of a hernia.

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

1871 people found this helpful

7 Precautions To Be Taken After Undergoing A Hernia Surgery

MBBS, MS - General Surgery
General Surgeon, Kota

Hernia is generally an effect of intense physical exertion and the chances of ailing from hernia largely depend on genetics. It is a condition when a specific organ pushes through a muscle wall or any membrane inside a human body and is treated via surgical procedures.

Post-operative hernia care is very critical to avoid any potential complications. People treated via a surgical technique for hernia need to give themselves sufficient days of bed rest, followed by weeks of relaxation to avoid straining the body in any way. During the recovery phase, it is essential to follow the advised post-operative care like to avoid smoking, running up the stairs, or following any strenuous exercise regime. One can definitely go for a walk and drink lot of fluids or consume a lot of fibre and vegetables.

A big no to smoking and yes to fluids!

ncreased intake of fluids is recommended after patients who have undergone a surgical treatment to treat hernia. We receive a good amount of fluid before and during surgery, however post-surgery the fluid intake typically decreases. Minimizing fluid consumption can lead to constipation. Avoiding fluids after hernia surgery can interfere with the bowel movements as the stools become dry and hard. Higher fluid intake will soften the stools and make bowel movements easier. As the body passes the unwanted food via large intestine, water re-absorption occurs here. If consumption of nicotine and narcotic pain medications is increased, it affects this process further. If the body does not replenish the fluids adequately it is known to cause dehydration and further drying and hardening of the stools. To restore proper hydration to all aspects of the body, is it imperative to re-establlish the adequate fluid intake soon after surgery. One should also limit nicotine intake after hernia surgery. Risk of complications post-surgical treatments are heightened to a great extent if one stays on a smoking regime. Possibilities of developing an infection in the surgical incision are increased. It is also known to cause acid reflux symptoms. Smoking after hernia repair should be avoided until six to eight weeks post-surgery.

Exercise to maintain a healthy weight

Though strenuous workouts are not encouraged after hernia surgery, physical activity under guidance can stimulate bowel movements and relieve constipation. Light exercises such as walking are encouraged to promote weight loss. Exercises focused on muscle movement of legs, arms and shoulders and chest and back help burn calories and enhance metabolism. This aids in weight reduction. Try to begin with an exercise plan at least consult your therapist immediately. You can start walking to the extent you feel comfortable after surgery. With no specific limitation, always remember to listen to your body. One should avoid lifts and exercises like squatting. You can work out on your abs gradually with minor sit-ups. Strengthening abdominal muscles is advised by conducting exercises like lifting the knees in the air and shoulders slowly off the ground. If there is no pain, this exercise can be repeated. Deep breathing exercise should also be practiced to oxygenate the blood flow thereby expediting the healing process.

Increased usage of laxatives

To stimulate and hydrate the intestinal tract and avoid constipation, one should enhance the usage of laxatives and stool softeners. Consult your medical expert to opt for an over-the-counter laxative for hernia repair. One should not hesitate take an over-the-counter laxative for the first week after surgery. Use bulk-forming laxatives. They help in easier defecation of stools. It should take about three to five days to see positive results. Some examples of bulk-forming laxatives include methylcellulose, oat bran and polycarbophil. The dosage of such laxative should be increased gradually for the digestive system to adjust to this change. Other laxative agents such as Milk of Magnesia, Metamucil and Dulcolax tablets are also available in the market, which can be consumed after consulting the medical expert. These agents are safe and effective. Common problem after an an inguinal hernia repair is constipation which may also be worsened by pain killers. Consequently, they also help with post-operative constipation.

Consumption of fibre and vegetables

Fibre to an individual’s diet should be added slowly post hernia surgery as it can lead to complications varying from gas and bloating to abdominal cramps. Since hernia operation involves intestines to be pushed back inside the abdominal wall, intake of diet rich in fibre and fruits and vegetables will ensure smooth and easy bowel movements. This also helps to relieve the pain post inguinal surgery. Any excessive intake of dairy products should be avoided to ward off constipation. Some examples of foods rich in fibre are beans, whole grains, fruits and green leafy vegetables which are also known to prevent irritable bowel syndrome. Fibre rich food also helps to maintain the integrity of collagen and elastin of the abdominal wall along with lubrication of the intestines.

Keep the wound clean

Cleanliness is the key to quick recovery after surgical treatment of hernia. It is advisable to use a sponge or a towel for the first few days. This will help to keep the wound clean and avoid any kind of infections. Always follow your doctor’s instructions. Precautions like covering the wound while coughing helps. Surgical treatments can get contaminated too soon, therefore always follow stringent measures to keep the area clean and sterilized at all times. Until the incision heals, hygiene is of utmost importance. Before taking a shower, cover the surgical area with a plastic bag or use another technique to keep it dry. Keep a watch for any signs of infection. The use of non-absorbable mesh grafts could lead to infections or foreign body reactions if sanitation is not taken care of. Any kind of swelling or bluish discoloration at the incision site should be treated with an ice pack for 24-48 hours to relieve the swelling and discomfort. You may opt to keep a small pillow with you to avoid any discomfort while coughing. Taking a shower is advisable only after 24 hours after you go home unless you have drains. In case of metal clips or sutures not being visible, they are under the skin and will dissolve after 3 – 4 weeks.

Resuming activity after hernia repair

You will be able to mobilize post hernia surgery depending upon your surgical treatment. Hernia can be treated with various medical techniques like conventional surgery or laparoscopic surgery depending on the condition of the patient. The hernia which has been treated laproscopically allows the patient to return to their regular routine faster as compared to recovery from the conventional surgery which takes a little longer due to pain and soreness around the wound. Generally a doctor advises the patient on the amount of discomfort they might experience and precautions that need to be taken before resuming to daily routine. Precautions like standing up slowly should be taken care of Activities such as swimming or driving need to be avoided as they put a strain on the incision. The same holds true for office routine. Individuals who are in a desk job can usually can return to work within a week or two but where work require strenuous activity or heavy lifting require several more weeks of rest before they return to their job.

Follow-up on your appointment

It is imperative to schedule a follow-up visit 7-10 days after your surgery. Your doctor will check if the wound has healed completely or in case you need some special care including dosage of anti-biotics for few more days. He will also let you know in case any special precautions need to be taken to expedite the healing. In case of any change in your diet is required, your medical expert will guide you through it. In case your insision has not healed or if there is any kind of discomfort, talk to your doctor about it. If all is well, your doctor will remove your stitches in case they are not the ones that dissolve on their own. Or maybe your dressing will be changed depending upon the wound healing and the swelling and bruising checked. At this stage the doctor will also discuss the post-operative care and assess your condition to return to work. It is highly unlikely to suffer from any severe post-operative snags. Mild complications like blood clots or urinary problems may persist, for which your doctor will advise required medications, but these are extremely rare. You should also consult your doctor about when you can resume specific activities such as sports, heavy labor and lifting. Post your initial check-up, you should plan on weekly checkups to further avoid any risks until next four weeks. It is important to get regular medical checkups while following the precautions.

4 people found this helpful

What is Hernia - Types, Symptoms, Causes, Treatment and More!

MBBS
Internal Medicine Specialist, Delhi

Hernia:

Hernia is a disease that occurs when one of the body organs pushes through the tissue or muscle holding it in its place. This disease commonly affects the abdominal area. However, it may also affect other parts of the human body including the thighs, belly button and groin. Hernia is not considered to be a life-threatening disease. But it doesn’t cure on its own and may lead to several complications. Patients, suffering from hernia, may need to undergo surgeries to get the disease cured and prevent any complications.

Types of Hernia:

There are four major types of hernia. They are:

1.     Inguinal hernia – This is the commonest form of hernia and makes for 70% of all hernia cases reported worldwide. It occurs when the intestines push through the weak muscles or tissues of the lower abdomen. This type of hernia mostly affects the inguinal canal.

2.     Hiatal hernia – This type of hernia occurs when part of stomach pushes up through the diaphragm muscles into the chest cavity. Diaphragm is a muscular layer that helps breathing by contracting air and drawing it into the lungs. And this muscular layer separates the human organs in the abdominal area and the organs in the chest area.

3.     Umbilical hernia – This type of hernia mostly affects toddlers who are aged 6 months or less. This hernia affects the belly button area and occurs when the intestines protrude through abdominal walls near the belly button. One of the easiest ways to spot this type of hernia is by noticing the bulge in or near the belly button of the toddler, especially when they cry. This type of hernia goes away as the child grows. Typically, when the child is one year’s old, abdominal wall muscles become stronger and Umbilical hernias completely vanishes. If the bulge in the belly button area continues even after the child is 1 years old, a surgery may be required to remove the hernia.

4.     Incisional hernia – This type of hernia mostly affects people who have undergone abdominal surgeries. In this hernia, the intestine pushes through the incision scar or the tissues weakened by the surgery.

Symptoms:

The commonest way to identify hernia is by noticing a lump or bulge in the affected areas of the body. Those suffering from inguinal hernia may notice a bulge on the sides of their pubic bone. This is the area where groin and thigh meet.

Here is a list of some of the most common symptoms of inguinal hernia:

Pain in lower abdomen (when bending, coughing, or lifting an object)

Weakness

Heaviness in abdomen

Burning sensation in the affected area

Here is a list of some of the most common symptoms of hiatal hernia:

Acid reflux

Burning sensation in stomach

Chest pain

Swallowing difficulty

Please note: In many cases, hernia shows no symptoms at all. One may not be able to identify the problem until it is discovered by a medical examination

Causes:

There are many causes for hernia. However, it is typically caused by strain and muscle weakness. The symptoms of hernia may show very early or may even take years to show up depending on its cause. Here is a list of some of the many causes of muscle weakness that may eventually lead to hernia.

-Abdominal wall not closing the womb properly. This is a congenital defect.

- Old age

-  chronic coughing

-  Muscle damages due to injuries or surgery

Here is a list of some of the many causes of strain that may lead to hernia:

-  Pregnancy. During pregnancy abdominal area is under constant pressure

-  Constipation. It may strain the bowel movement.

- Lifting heavy objects

-  Ascites (fluid in abdomen)

-  Sudden weight gain

-  Surgery or incision

-  Persistent cough

- Persistent Sneezing

Risk Factors:

Here is a list of some of the many factors that may increase the likeliness of developing hernia.

-  Family history of hernia

-  Obesity

-  Chronic cough

- Chronic constipation

- Smoking

Some medical conditions including cystic fibrosis may also increase the risk of hernia. This is because cystic fibrosis can damages the functionality of lungs and leads to chronic cough.

Complications:

If hernia is not treated, it may lead to life-threatening complications including:

- Severe abdominal pain 

- Nausea 

- Severe constipation

- Swelling in abdomen 

- Strangulation in intestine 

- Damage to intestinal tissue

Diagnosis:

The diagnosis of inguinal or incisional hernia requires physical examination of the affected area. Medical professionals may physically examine bulge in the abdomen or groin when standing, coughing or straining to identify hernia.

Diagnosis of hiatal hernia is done by endoscopy or barium X-ray. Barium X-ray takes a series of ex-ray of the digestive tract. Before taking this test, the patients are made to drink a liquid solution containing barium. On the other hand, endoscopy is a process where a small camera attached to a tube is threaded down the throat into esophagus and stomach in order to check for hernia. Both these tests help identify the traces of hernia in the stomach.

For umbilical hernia, an ultrasound is done on children. Ultrasound is the medical test where high-frequency sound waves are used to create an image of the internal body organs.

Treatment:

Hernia patients may need treatment depending upon the size of the bulge and the severity of the symptoms of the disease. Treatment of the disease may vary from a surgery to medication depending upon the complication of the disease. Some of the most common treatment options of hernia include lifestyle changes, medication or surgery.

Lifestyle Changes

Ensuring healthy and balanced diet can help get relief from the symptoms of hiatal hernia. However, dietary changes cannot make the disease go away entirely. Patients suffering from hernia must avoid consuming heavy meals. In addition, one must remain careful of not lying down or bending over after the meal. Furthermore, it makes sense to ensure healthy body weight.

Some form of exercises can help reduce the symptoms of hernia and strengthen the muscles around the hernia site. But be advised that improper exercise may lead to unnecessary pressure at the body parts affected by hernia. This may cause the hernia to increase further. Before starting on a fitness regime, it makes sense to discuss what exercises hernia patients must do or not do with a certified physical therapist.

Hernia patients must avoid smoking as it may cause heart burn and acid reflux. Also, it is important to avoid food items that may cause acid reflux or heartburn. 

Medication

Certified medical professionals may suggest medications to hernia patients. These medicines may involve some over-the-counter drugs that help reduce acid reflux and provide immediate relief from symptoms of hernia. Some such medicines are proton pump inhibitors, antacids and H-2 receptor blockers.

Surgery

In some cases, hernia patients may need to undergo a surgery to remove the bulge created by hernia. This surgical procedure is done by stitching the hole in the abdominal wall. This hole is usually patched using surgical mesh.

Typically, two types of surgical procedures are carried out to repair hernia. These are open or laparoscopic surgery.

In laparoscopic surgery, doctors use a camera which is thrusted inside the body through the tube and then the hernia is repaired using small incisions. This type of surgery doesn’t cause much damage to the muscle tissues surrounding the abdominal wall. Whereas in an open surgery, doctors make larger incision in order to repair the disease.

Prevention:

Mostly, it remains a daunting task to avoid muscle weakness which eventually leads to hernia. But by being a little careful and cautious of not placing strain on muscles, one can easily prevent hernia from occurring. Some of the many tips to prevent hernia include:

- Quitting smoking

-  Regular check-ups to avoid persistent cough

-  Ensuring healthy body weight

- Avoiding strains during urination or bowel movements

-  Avoid lifting of heavy objects

Myths:

Myth 1: Hernia is a sign of weakness. 

Fact: No! Hernia is not a sign of weakness. It is actually a disease that must be treated properly to avoid life-threatening complications.

Myth 2: Yoga can be effective in treating Hernia.

Fact: While a large number of yoga practitioners claim to have got relief from hernia using yoga, there are no medical evidences that prove that hernia can be treated using yoga. Therefore, it is important to undergo a proper surgery to have the hernia removed. If not treated properly hernia can grow in size and lead to serious, life-threatening complications.

Myth 3: Surgery of hernia requires a big abdominal incision. 

Fact: While it is true that an incision in the abdomen is required to push the affected tissues back in place, mostly a very small incision is made to carry out the surgical procedure. Mostly, plastic mesh is used to repair hernia.

Myth 4: Laparoscopic hernia surgery is the only treatment for hernia.

Fact: It is important to understand that not everyone is eligible to undergo Laparoscopic hernia surgery.  People with excessive body weight are usually required to undergo open hernia surgeries. In addition, those who have suffered infections at the site of the hernia or have abdominal scar tissues are also required to undergo open hernia surgery.

Myth 5: Hernia is a communicable disease and spreads with physical contact.

Fact: Hernia is a non-communicable disease and is not spread by physical contact. In addition, hernia also doesn’t spread via air or water.

FAQs:

Question 1: Can hernia be dangerous?

Answer: If hernia is not treated properly, it may get bigger. The bigger it grows, the more painful it becomes.  In addition, in case of strangulated hernia, one may require an immediate surgery to have the hernia removed, otherwise it may lead to life-threatening complications.

Question 2: What is a Strangulated Hernia?

Answer: In case the abdominal wall closes while a fold of bowel protrudes through it, it is called a strangulated hernia. Strangulated hernia may lead to an abruption or blockage of blood supply to the bowel. This could lead to extreme discomfort and one may need to undergo surgery immediately to avoid any further complications.  That’s why it makes sense to not avoid the pain of hernia and one must seek immediate medical attention.

Question 3: Can a hernia be a birth defect?

Answer: Yes! Unfortunately, hernia can be passed on from parents to offspring. In addition, some newborns with extremely weak inguinal canal can eventually develop hernia. Furthermore, many cases of infants having umbilical hernia have been reported. While most of these cases become better on their own, some of them may need surgeries.

Question 4: What is a “sports hernia"?

Answer: A tendon or ligament injury in the groin is referred to as sports hernia. It may mimic the discomfort of a true hernia. Depending on how severe the condition is, sports hernia can be treated using medications, injections, physical therapy or surgery.

Question 5: How to detect hernia?

Answer: Hernia is actually an abnormal opening in the abdominal wall allowing abdominal contents to protrude through the opening. One can easily notice a bulge or a bump under the skin in such a case. While many hernia do not really cause pain or discomfort, a large number of hernia cases reported cause a lot of pain and discomfort. It makes sense to consult a certified medical practitioner as soon as one detects hernia.

Question 6: Is surgery the only treatment for hernia?

Answer: No! Many types of hernia can be treated by medicines, injections or physical therapies. However, most hernia cases require surgeries. Those with little or no discomfort or pain concerning hernia do not require undergoing medical surgeries immediately.

Question 7: Does smoking affect hernia?

Answer: Yes! Smoking may cause chronic coughing and it can lead to hernia. Medical researchers have revealed that smoking may also cause hernia to reoccur. Those who smoke heavily are at a greater risk of developing abdominal hernias as against non-smokers because nicotine in cigarettes usually weakens the abdominal wall.

Question 8: Is hernia surgery risky?

Answer: Usually, there is no risk associated with hernia surgery. However, infections and bleeding is possible when undergoing hernia surgery. The surgery may also pose risk if the patient is a heavy smoker, consumes alcohol in large quantity, is old or is suffering from some other medical conditions. Also, chances of injuries to bladder, blood vessels or nerves may increase due to hernia surgery, as is the case with any other surgery.

Question 9: What is a ventral hernia?

Answer: When there is a weakness in the abdominal wall developing a hole or tear in the wall, it is referred to as ventral or abdominal hernia. This hernia is caused when intestinal or abdominal tissues protrude through the hole or tear in the abdominal wall. This causes a bulge that is visible under the skin.

Question 10: How soon can one start normal activities after hernia surgery?

Answer: This actually depends upon the type of hernia and the kind of surgery undertaken to repair hernia. However, most hernia surgeries just last for a few hours and one can return to normal activities within just 2-4 week of the surgery.

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