Inguinal hernia magnified illustration

Inguinal Hernia Repair: What To Expect and Recovery Tips

October 23, 2019

Do you have an inguinal hernia? This is a common type of hernia that involves the abdominal muscles. This can cause lots of pain in situations like when you cough/sneeze, stand up or lift heavy weights. The good news is this condition isn’t usually dangerous on its own. The bad news is the condition won’t improve over time. In fact, it can even become very serious if there are complications. It can be treated through some main types of inguinal hernia repair. As always it’s important to know your treatment options in order to pick the right option for your situation. A doctor can help to sort things out for you.

If you have an inguinal hernia, you’ll have a few main types of treatment to pick from. They include non-tension and closed repair. These are different procedures and as always each has pros and cons worth weighing before picking one. You should also know the basics for each procedure including what the surgeries are all about. One of the most important issues when selecting a hernia option is picking one as early as possible. The larger the hernia becomes the fewer options you’ll have. You’ll also likely have to shell out more money, which is a major drawback.

 

What Is Inguinal Hernia?

It’s important to know the basics of this condition before talking about surgical treatments. In a nutshell, this condition happens when tissue like part of the intestine pushes through a weak area or hole in the ab muscles.

This condition can cause pain and especially in certain situations like when coughing/sneezing or lifting heavy stuff.

Is an inguinal-type hernia dangerous? It’s not very serious compared to others like a strangulated hernia. In that case, the condition is very dangerous since the tissue loses its blood supply. This can cause problems like toxins getting into the person’s bloodstream.

Meanwhile, this kind of hernia can also result in complications. Those can result in many problems that can cause a lot of pain and discomfort. These are definitely situations you’ll want to avoid.

You should definitely know the symptoms of this condition so you’ll know what to look for. Here are some of the main ones:

  • Bulge on the pubic bone’s side
  • Heavy feeling in groin
  • Pain/discomfort in groin
  • Pain/swelling near testicles
  • Aching/burning in the bulge
  • Weakness/pressure in groin

 

Newborns and kids sometimes experience this condition. That’s due to the weakness in the ab wall that begins at birth. The baby might have a smaller appetite than normal. Parents might also only see the hernia during activities like coughing and crying.

In older children the hernia might be easier to notice when they do certain actions. They include coughing or standing for a long time.

There are also some complications to watch out for. If you can’t push in the hernia the contents could be trapped within the ab wall. This is a more serious situation.

You’ll certainly want to prevent the hernia from going from “incarcerated” to “strangulated.” The latter is very serious because it means the hernia is trapped and can’t get any blood. It’s critical to treat this condition ASAP.

Inguinal Hernia Repair

If you have this kind of hernia then it’s important to know the different treatment options. Today there are several different methods. It’s critical to pick one ASAP to help prevent the hernia from growing. Here are some of the main treatments for this hernia:

1. Non-tension/Mesh Repair

This is known as “non-tension” because it involves using mesh that’s used to make the area stronger. It’s then secured with stitches/stables. The mesh is made of a bendable material that remains in the abdomen.

This option provides some key benefits. For example, there’s a lower chance of the hernia returning. You can also pick from different types of mesh-like plugs and 3D.

Since there are different options it’s important to find a surgeon who specializes in the type of mesh repair you want. This is critical to make sure you get the best results. Not all surgeons specialize in ALL types.

2. Closed Repair

This is known as a ‘closed” procedure and especially when the hernia is small. /This involves putting a special tool in the abdomen. The surgeon can then see and do the procedure.

This procedure uses mesh to provide support. As a result, this lowers the chance of the hernia symptoms returning. Another benefit of this option is smaller incisions are made.

These facts provide various benefits. For example, they include less scarring and allow the patient to return to their day-to-day life sooner. In fact, after the Closed Repair procedure, most patients can go back to work within a couple of days.

Before you pick a procedure it’s important to talk to your doctor about what to expect, the pros and cons, and other issues. This will help you to pick the best procedure for your particular situation. Your doctor will likely suggest a particular procedure based on factors like your hernia’s size.

How to Recover from Surgery

If you want to speed up recovery from preventing inguinal hernia repair procedures, you should consider these tips:

 

Do exercises (and do the “right” ones)

Yes, it’s important to do moderate-level exercises including cardio and weight-resistance. However, you should also do exercises that won’t put too much pressure on the ab muscles.

There are many options. Some of the best ones include crunches/sit-ups, biking, light weight-lifting, and jogging.

Meanwhile, there are certain exercises you should try to avoid. They include squats and jumping exercises. What’s the problem? These types of exercises put extra pressure on the ab wall, which you’ll want to avoid.

Quit smoking

If you smoke then this is another reason to consider putting out your last cigarette. When you cough hard it puts pressure on your ab muscles. If you have a hernia also it can make it worse. It can also result in a new hernia forming.

Get hard coughing checked out

This is critical because the coughing can cause a hernia or make it worse. For example, if you have problems like asthma or allergies your doctor can prescribe meds to help control the symptoms. That, in turn, can help prevent hard coughing.

Eat more fiber

This is important since it can help to prevent constipation and make bowel movements more regular. This can, in turn, prevent straining, which can boost your risk of hernia.

There are certain foods you should consider eating. They include fruits, veggies, whole grains, seeds, and nuts.

Maintain a healthy body weight

This is important because it prevents your ab wall from being under extra weight and fat when you do certain actions like standing up and walking around.

It can be tough to lose weight. So, it’s important to talk to your doctor about the best plan for you. This should be based on different factors like your diet goals after inguinal hernia repair.

Symptoms of Inguinal Hernia