Hernia- Types, Symptoms, and Treatment

Hernia - Types, Symptoms, and Treatment

Hernia occurs when an organ or fatty tissue protrudes through a weak spot of the wall of the muscle where it normally resides.  It can be caused by pressure like coughing, constipation, etc, which pushes the organ through the weak spot of the muscle. Hernia can occur in the umbilicus, groin, at the site of a previous abdominal incision, etc.

Hernias tend to get bigger and depending on the size and symptoms, surgery may be advised by the doctor.  Hernia surgery becomes necessary in case of incarceration or if the hernia becomes strangulated.  An incarcerated hernia occurs when the tissues that are herniated gets trapped and cannot be moved back into its place.  When blood supply to the herniating tissue is compromised, it can lead to strangulated hernia. 

What are the different types of Hernia?

  • Inguinal Hernia
  • Femoral Hernia –
  • Umbilical Hernia
  • Hiatal Hernia
  • Incisional Hernia
  • Obturator Hernia
  • Umbilical Hernia

Symptoms

Some of the common symptoms of hernia include a bulge in the abdomen or groin area that is noticeable and can be pushed back in, but may not be visible when lying down.  Pressure in the abdomen such as coughing, laughing, straining during a bowel movement, lifting weights causing the lump to appear.  Swelling in the scrotum or groin, pain when lifting heavy objects, increase in the size of the lump, etc are other symptoms

Treatment

The treatment for hernia is surgery.  The two ways of performing hernia surgery are open hernia repair and laparoscopic hernia repair. 

Open Hernia Repair

Open hernia repair is performed by making a large incision at the hernia site and the hernia is pushed back into the abdomen and a mesh is placed at the weak spot to strengthen the abdominal muscles.  This prevents the hernia from reoccurring.

Laparoscopic Hernia Repair

Laparoscopic hernia repair on the other hand is performed with the use of a thin instrument called laparoscope.  This is inserted through a small incision of just 1 cm.  The surgeons views the abdominal contents through a camera placed at the tip of the laparoscope which projects the internal contents on a video monitor.   The benefit of this method is that only 2/3 very small incisions are made rather than a long incision as in open surgery.  Thus only 3 tiny scars are produced and also aids in reduced hospital stay, quicker recovery times, faster return to work.

We will be able to place a very large mesh at the origin of the hernias and hence the recurrence of hernias is one-hundredth that of open repair.

Infection chance also is very, very less. To do repair of both sides, we don’t need any extra cuts.

Open surgery needs 10 cm cut even on the second side.

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