Hernia may sound like a scary medical condition, but don’t worry; they’re actually quite common and treatable!
The lining of the abdominal cavity forms a sac, which is what a hernia is (peritoneum). The weak spot in the strong layer of the abdominal wall that encloses the muscle is where the sac enters the body.
Simply put, Hernia occurs when a part of your body, typically an organ or tissue, pushes through a hole or weak spot in a muscle or tissue that is supposed to keep it in place. It’s like a lump in the body poking out of a hole in the side.
Hernias can occur anywhere or in any part of the body. They are common in the belly button and groyne area (where your legs meet your body). You may notice a bump or lump where the hernia is. Hernias can be painful, but they are rarely dangerous.
Let’s understand the causes, symptoms, and treatment options for hernias and how and when surgery can be required!
Before we start, If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of a hernia, it’s important to seek medical attention right away. Our experienced team of doctors and surgeons at Aveksha Hospital offer top-quality diagnosis, treatment, and aftercare for patients with hernia with our general surgery department.
Types of Hernias
Hernias can be a real pain, and several types can affect different parts of the body. For example:
- Inguinal Hernias
- Hiatal Hernias
- Umbilical Hernias
- Incisional Hernias
Inguinal hernias are more common in men and occur in the groin area, while umbilical hernias are around the belly button and can happen if the muscle doesn’t close properly after birth. Femoral hernias, on the other hand, tend to occur in women and create a bulge in the upper thigh, just below the groin. Hiatal hernias happen in the diaphragm muscle that separates the chest and abdomen and can cause part of the upper stomach to push into the chest. Finally, incisional hernias can occur at the site of previous abdominal surgery.
Some causes and symptoms of Hernia to know
Hernia can affect people of all ages and backgrounds. While the specific causes of hernias can vary depending on the individual, several factors can contribute to their development.
Hernias can occur due to a variety of factors, from genetic predisposition to medical conditions that increase pressure on the abdominal wall.
- Some common causes include heavy lifting, straining while using the toilet, and any activity that raises the pressure inside the belly. In some cases, hernias may be present at birth, but the bulge may not be noticeable until later in life.
- Children can also get hernias, particularly inguinal hernias in boys.
- Other factors that can contribute to the development include chronic constipation, coughing, or sneezing, enlarged prostate, fluid in the abdomen, peritoneal dialysis, poor nutrition, smoking, and undescended testicles.
- Fluid in the abdomen: Conditions like ascites, which is the accumulation of fluid in the abdomen, can also contribute to the development of hernias.
In some cases, hernias may be hereditary and run in families.
In some cases, hernias may be present at birth, but the bulge may not be noticeable until later in life. Children can also get hernias, particularly inguinal hernias in boys. While some of these causes can be avoided or managed, others may be out of your control.
If you’re experiencing any of the following symptoms, you might be dealing with a hernia:
- Bulging or swelling in the affected area
- Pain or discomfort, especially when lifting or bending over
- A feeling of heaviness or pressure in the affected area
- Weakness or aching in the groin or abdomen
- Nausea, vomiting, or other digestive issues (in the case of hiatal hernias)
Treatment options for Hernia
There are treatment options available to help ease the discomfort and prevent any complications.
First up on the list is watchful waiting. This may be recommended for small, asymptomatic hernias. The idea here is to keep an eye on the hernia and make sure it doesn’t worsen over time. However, if the hernia begins to cause pain or other symptoms, it’s time to explore other options.
Next, lifestyle changes can also be helpful in managing hernias. Maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding activities that put undue pressure on the affected area can make a big difference. Additionally, wearing supportive garments or using a hernia truss can help provide relief.
Medications may also be prescribed to alleviate symptoms such as pain and inflammation. However, these typically only provide temporary relief and do not address the underlying issue.
Herniorrhaphy ( Hernia Repair Surgery): Only treatment for Hernia
While watchful waiting, lifestyle changes, and medications can be helpful in managing symptoms and preventing complications in some cases, surgery is often the only treatment option that can fully repair a hernia. This is especially true for larger, more symptomatic hernias that have a higher risk of complications such as incarceration or strangulation.
During hernia surgery, the weakened muscle wall is repaired using a variety of techniques, such as laparoscopic or open surgery. In some cases, a mesh patch may also be used to reinforce the repaired area and reduce the risk of recurrence.
It’s important to note that hernia surgery is a common and safe procedure, with a high success rate and low complication rate. However, as with any surgery, there are risks involved and it’s important to discuss these with your healthcare provider before making a decision.
Overall, while surgery may seem like a daunting option, it is often the most effective and long-lasting treatment option for hernias. So if you’re struggling with a hernia, don’t hesitate to discuss your options with a healthcare professional to determine the best course of action for you.
Post-Surgery Care for Hernia
For a quick and painless recovery, good postoperative care and management are crucial. Here are some post-hernia surgery care and management tips:
- Rest and Recovery: To help your body recover following hernia surgery, rest is essential. For at least six weeks, refrain from exerting yourself physically or lifting anything heavy. After a week, you can get back to your regular routine, but it’s best to avoid any activities that make you feel pain or discomfort.
- Pain management: After hernia surgery, you could feel pain or discomfort. To treat the pain, your doctor may recommend over-the-counter painkillers or write a prescription for painkillers. Do not take more than the suggested dose; stick to the appropriate dosage.
- Incision care: In order to prevent infection, keep the incision site clean and dry. Your doctor might advise routinely cleaning the wound site with an antiseptic solution. The use of soap or any other item that can irritate the skin should be avoided.
- Diet and Hydration: Have a fibre-rich diet that is healthful and balanced to avoid constipation, which can put pressure on the incision site. Steer clear of items like beans, cabbage, and broccoli that might result in bloating or gas. Consume plenty of liquids to stay hydrated and hasten the healing process. Smoking and alcohol consumption should be avoided because they can slow the healing process.
- Doctor’s follow-up: Attend all of your doctor’s follow-up appointments to track your healing and discuss any issues or difficulties that may come up.
Early detection and treatment are key when it comes to herniasIf you’re experiencing symptoms or have concerns about a hernia, don’t wait – schedule an appointment with one of our experienced surgeons today. We’ll work with you to determine the best course of treatment and help you get back to living your best life
At Aveksha, our General Surgery Department is staffed with experienced surgeons who specialise in hernia repair surgery. We understand the discomfort and inconvenience that hernias can cause, and we’re dedicated to providing top-quality care and treatment to our patients. From diagnosis to post-surgery recovery, we’re here every step of the way to ensure a successful outcome.
Our experienced hernia surgeons specialise in laparoscopic and minimally invasive hernia surgery, including umbilical hernia surgery. We offer the best hospital facilities for hernia surgery in Bangalore. If you’re looking for the best hernia surgeon near you, we have the expertise to diagnose, treat and manage hernias. We offer affordable hernia surgery costs in Bangalore, with no compromise on the quality of care provided.