hernia repair

Hernia Repair: What to Expect After Surgery

July 22, 2019

Your hernia will not go away on its own, hernia repair is done with a surgical procedure to get corrected.

A hernia is fatty tissue or organ that passes through a weak muscle wall, left alone they will develop into a bigger bulge. At times, it can put your life in danger because of its complications of strangulated hernia but not all hernias need emergency medical treatment. As this bulges on the wrong places grow, surgery will be the only means to correct it.

Why You Need a Hernia Repair:

  • There is hernia incarceration of tissue on the abdominal wall, trapped there will lead to organ strangulation.
  • The hernia is growing bigger.
  • There is hernia strangulation complication, the intestine gets stuck that the blood supply is cut off.
  • There is pain that gravitates in severity

 

Types of Hernia Repair

Treatment of a hernia is by surgery. A hernia repair refers to a surgical procedure to correct a hernia of a bulging organ or bulging tissue thru muscle walls. The type of repair to use depends on the nature of the hernia. A hernia may either be reducible, incarcerated or strangulated. The reducible hernia is a hernia that moves back and returns to its origin. The second is irreducible or incarcerated hernia is when the organ or tissue got stuck in the hernia sac that it cannot move back. And the third is strangulated hernia where the organ or tissue stuck and is cut off its blood supply.

Herniorrhaphy

This surgery is done to repair the tissue and had been the oldest surgery used. Directly on the hernia, a long incision is made over the hernia for the surgeon to access it so tissues or organ can be returned to its proper location and the hernia sac is detached.

Hernioplasty

Also, called a tension-free hernia repair. This is a type of surgery where a mesh patch is stitched over the weak tissues. The weak tissues around the herniated area will anchor on the mesh as they regrow.

Both these surgical methods may be done through techniques of either a single long incision or by inserting a laparoscopic instrument to access view thru the small cuts.

Open Hernia Repair Surgery

This is done by a single incision into the groin. If it is a direct hernia the bulge is pushed back to its origin sewing its edges to stronger muscle tissue. And if it is an indirect hernia, it is pushed back to its origin or tied prior to removal.

Laparoscopic Hernia Repair Surgery

This is a keyhole surgery that uses a laparoscope that is inserted through small incisions of the lower abdomen. A laparoscope is a thin tube that with a light and a video camera inserted to a small cut and allowing access to the surgeon to view. Without this instrument, the surgeon needs a larger opening and laparoscopic surgery is minimally invasive.

Robotic Hernia Repair Surgery

This is a laparoscopic hernia repair using advanced technology. The procedure is the same with laparoscopic hernia surgery but there is a robotic arm holding the surgical instrument then the team moves to a computer. The monitor gives a 3-D high-resolution image of what is going on inside the body and hand control is used so the robot and the instrument operates.

 

What To Expect After An Open Hernia Repair Surgery

Recovery

This open surgery is safe with the recurrence rate of at least 10% on an approximate. People on an open hernia repair surgery are discharged within the day after the surgical procedure and will take approximately after the third week to resume normal activities. You can resume lighter activities as the incision heals but not the strenuous activities. Activities such as driving may be resumed if the groin area does not hurt anymore. Sexual intercourse can be resumed after three weeks.

Infection

On an open hernia repair surgery, expect signs of an inflamed area over the incision. Application a cold compress or ice (on thin cloth) around the inflamed area is advised at least 20 minutes on every hour or two frequency will alleviate the pain. The ice will numb the swelling area and lessen the pain.

Below are symptoms of infection, you need to call your doctor if you have any of the following:

  • You have a fever.
  • There are redness and warmness in the incision area.
  • The testicle is hard and swollen.
  • There is significant bleeding on the dressing cover.

Risks of Open Hernia Surgery

  • The reaction of general anesthesia
  • Bleeding site infection
  • Damage to the femoral artery
  • Damaged nerves and loss of blood supply to the scrotum
  • Damage of the vans deference, the cord that transport sperms from testicles to the penis

What To Expect After A Laparoscopic Hernia Repair

Recovery

In a laparoscopic hernia repair, there is a low chance of recurrence. This is an outpatient surgery so you will be able to go home on the same day and its recovery time is a maximum of two weeks. The pain is lesser and healing is faster because this involves small incisions as compared to open hernia surgery. You can resume light activities after two weeks and tough related activities after four weeks of surgical procedure.

Risk of Laparoscopic Hernia Repair Surgery:

  • The reaction of general anesthesia
  • Pain or injury on the testicles
  • Damage of the vans deference, the cord that transport sperms from testicles to the penis
  • Fluid and blood hematoma formation in the scrotum, inguinal canal or abdominal muscles
  • Bladder injury or urinary retention
  • Infection either from the mesh or stitches
  • Scar formation
  • Abdominal organs, blood vessels, and nerve injury
  • Pain in the thigh
  • Recurrence

Hernia repair has improved with the discovery of laparoscope and advanced technology. The world is enjoying its benefits but comes with a price and with minimal risks involved. As surgery is necessary to correct this condition you are now offered choices which one is best for your type of hernia.