A hernia occurs when the protective layers of the abdomen become damaged or torn and appear as a bulge. Since the intestine can pass through the affected area and cause more damage, hernias can be life-threatening if not treated properly.
Some of the most common types of hernias include; congenital (when a person is born with the hernia), inguinal (found in the groin area), umbilical (near the belly button area), and incisional (near previous surgical incisions).
Common Hernia Symptoms
- Mild to Severe Abdominal Pain
- Lump in the Abdominal Area
- Straining to Urinate or Defecate
- Inflammation or Redness of the Affected Area
Hernia Repair Surgery
Although there are special devices and creams available to help with the discomfort brought on by a hernia, the only effective treatment for the condition is surgery. Delaying the procedure is dangerous, as the intestine may become trapped and cut off blood supply to that area. Talk to your doctor about treatment options to prevent complications from developing.
There are two methods in which hernia surgery is performed:
- Open Repair – This surgical method is the traditional type and has been used for decades. The surgery may be performed with general anesthesia as well as local anesthesia. Open repair surgery usually includes a longer recovery period and can be slightly more painful than other surgical methods.
- Laparoscopic Hernia Repair – This newer type of surgery is quickly becoming the favored technique. Laparoscopic hernia repair is a minimally invasive surgical procedure which can be done using general or local anesthesia.
Laparoscopic Hernia Repair Benefits
- Shorter Hospitalization Stay
- Fast Recovery
- Less Pain
- Smaller Incisions
- Decreased Risk of Scar Formation
Recovery time for this surgery is not long, especially if the procedure is done using laparoscopic technology. The majority of patients are able to go home the same day and can return to their normal daily routines within a week.
Some of the most common risks involved with laparoscopic hernia surgery include: excess bleeding, infection, accidental injury to other parts of the body (bladder, nerves, blood vessels, etc.), and trouble urinating for a short time after the procedure.
However, the greater risk is in leaving a hernia untreated, since they can can pose a serious or life-threatening change in your health. Today, hernia surgery is a relatively low-risk procedure. Anyone suffering from this conditions can look forward to quickly returning to full health and normal activities. The physicians at Bay Surgical Specialists are available to help you make the right choice.