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Inguinal Hernia: Frequently Asked Questions

How Is An Inguinal Hernia Treated?

Various lifestyle and medical treatments often can help. Since hernias are caused by obesity, a serious program of weight control is recommended, especially if your weight is centered in the abdomen. Eating more fiber often helps reduce straining of the bowels. Getting more exercise, avoid standing for long periods of time and learning proper lifting techniques can strengthen the back areas or eliminate strain on the hernia. Since smoking often causes straining when coughing, it is also recommended that you stop. ...

What Is An Inguinal Hernia?

Inguinal hernias are protrusions of soft tissue, such as a portion of the intestine, through a weak spot in a muscle, usually in the abdominal wall. Inguinal hernias occur where the abdomen meets the thigh in the groin region. Since hernias are weaknesses or tears in the wall of the abdomen, sometimes they are referred to as ruptures.
A hernia is a sac of tissue which bulges out from the abdomen in the groin. Children are born with hernias, but may not have symptoms until they are older. Hernias occur more frequently in boys than in girls. During fetal development, the testicles move downward toward the scrotum through a tunnel--the processus vaginalis. After the testicles are in place, the tunnel is supposed to close and disappear. Hernias form when the processus vaginalis does not close. ...
An inguinal hernia is a condition where there is a defect or weakness in the inguinal canal which allows a loop of intestine to enters the inguinal canal. The inguinal canal is a tubular passage through the lower layers of the abdominal wall.
An inguinal hernia (say "IN-gwuh-nul HER-nee-uh") occurs when tissue pushes through a weak spot in your groin muscle. This causes a bulge in the groin or scrotum. The bulge may hurt or burn. Hernias do not heal on their own, and they tend to get worse over time. By having surgery to repair the hernia, you avoid the chance of a serious problem called strangulation . This occurs when a loop of intestine is trapped in a hernia and the blood supply is cut off, killing the tissue.

What Is The Surgery For an Inguinal Hernia Like?

Today surgical techniques are available that cause much less pain and discomfort than ever before. Fortunately, hernias are conditions that can be treated with this new technology. In fact, use of these new techniques has been so successful with hernia repairs, that most persons are only out of work for 7 to 10 days and are eating and functioning normally in three weeks. ...

What causes an inguinal hernia?

There is often no obvious cause of a hernia. A hernia occurs when an organ within the abdomen protrudes through a weak point or tear in the thin muscular wall that holds the abdominal organs in place. In men, a hernia can develop at the point where the spermatic cord passes out of the abdomen into the scrotum. Depending on the location of the defect, the hernia may create a bulge in the groin area or the small intestine can descend into the scrotum. Inguinal hernias occur less often in women than men.
Most inguinal hernias happen because an opening in the muscle wall does not close as it should before birth. That leaves a weak area in the belly muscle. Pressure on that area can cause tissue to push through and bulge out. A hernia can occur soon after birth or much later in life. You are more likely to get a hernia if you are overweight or you do a lot of lifting, coughing, or straining. Hernias are more common in men. A woman may get a hernia while she is pregnant because of the pressure on her belly wall.
Most inguinal hernias in adults occur due to the strain on the abdominal muscles, which are weakened by age or by congenital factors. The types of activity associated with the appearance of an inguinal hernia include chronic constipation causing a strain on the abdomen while on the toilet; gains in weight causing an increase in pressure on the abdominal wall; lifting heavy objects; repeated attacks of coughing; and finally, sudden twists, pulls or muscle strains.

How is the recurrent Inguinal Hernia approached?

In the author’s view it is best approached through a clean scar less area. Going through the previous inguinal scar is problematic and results in damage to the nerve supply, blood supply to the corresponding testis resulting in pain and possible testicular atrophy (reduction in the size of testis). Hence these are best approached through a Laparoscope, which is inserted well away from the scar and only the defect is corrected with a mesh.

Where does an inguinal hernia occur?

It occurs in the fold of the thigh as a painless bulge gradually increasing in size or sudden painful bulge associated with nausea, vomiting and severe abdominal discomfort. This is the commonest site for occurrence of hernia in males.

What are the differences between open and laparoscopic repair of an inguinal hernia?

The major differences are in the amount of postoperative pain, the time to start walking and the time taken to return to work which have been shown to be less in patients undergoing laparoscopic repair (6 to 18 days less). Wound numbness is also less after laparoscopic hernia repair. One study showed a slightly increased quality of life after laparoscopic, as apposed to open, repair.

What Does A Medical Evaluation of My Inguinal Hernia Include?

You'll have a physical exam with a doctor, complete a medical history questionnaire and talk with the doctor about your symptoms.

How Can I Tell If I Have An Inguinal Hernia?

Hernias produce different symptoms or feelings. Sometimes you'll notice a protrusion in your groin area between the pubis and the top of the leg or feel pain when you strain during urination or a bowel movement or when you lift a heavy object. The pain can be sharp and immediate. ...

What are the potential risks and complications of inguinal hernia repair?

Some possible complications of this procedure include: Bleeding and bruising of the abdominal wall Seroma (fluid collection under skin, occasionally requiring aspiration) Temporary nerve injury causing groin pain, or numbness Rare complications include: Recurrence of the hernia Chronic groin pain Infection of the skin or mesh Injury to surrounding structures, such as testicular vessels or vas deferens, possibly leading to the need for removal of the testicle Adverse reaction to the antibiotics or the anesthesia Any comp... ...


In operating an recurrent defects, the genetic surgical principal is to perform as little overall dissection as possible. Accordingly, routine attempts to identify fused anatomic layers are not made. Unlike primary repairs, with a recurrent hernia the spermatic cord is not routinely mobilized since attempts at such mobilization can cause damage to an already compromised cord, In indirect recurrent hernia. ...

How is an inguinal hernia diagnosed?

A doctor can usually know if you have a hernia based on your symptoms and a physical exam. The bulge is usually easy to feel.

What can I expect in terms of recovery from an inguinal hernia repair?

Every case is different, but the following are averages: Back to top Narcotic pain medicine is necessary for 1 - 2 days after discharge. You should not lift anything heavier than 10lbs for 30 days. You may resume aerobic exercise in 14 days. You will probably need 5 - 7 days off of work .

What are the signs and symptoms of inguinal hernia?

Symptoms of inguinal hernias differ. The onset is sometimes gradual, having no other symptoms other than the development of a bulge. Other times, the hernia will occur suddenly with a feeling that something has "given way," coupled by pain or discomfort. Signs and symptoms of inguinal hernias include visible bulges in the scrotum, groin, or abdominal wall; a feeling of weakness or pressure in the groin; a burning feeling at the bulge; and lastly, a gurgling feeling.

With all these different ways of repairing an inguinal hernia which one should I choose?

The open mesh repair and laparoscopic repairs have similar success rates and so from that point of view there is really nothing to choose between them. Equally, both can normally be performed as a day case (the patient goes home on the day of surgery). A laparoscopic repairs requires a general anaesthetic and relaxation of the abdominal wall in order to allow the space required to perform the operation to be created. ...

One month ago my son was diagnosed with inguinal hernia. He is one year old. How long can we wait?

Surgical treatment of inguinal hernia is performed as a planned one. You shouldn't wait as far as its strangulation is possible.

My son is 11 years old. His diagnosis is left inguinal hernia. We are recommended to wait until puberty period passes. What should we do?

Inguinal hernia is a congenital pathology, which may not reveal itself till some definite period. You shouldn't postpone the operation.
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