An estimated 5 million Americans suffer from hernias. A hernia occurs as a result of muscle weakness and strain. This can be due to aging, trauma, damage from a previous surgery, or caused by a congenital defect. While not all hernias will cause symptoms, some commonly experienced symptoms are: pain, the feeling of heaviness, and burning sensations in the lower abdomen, or a bulging or swelling under the skin. These symptoms can make a hernia very uncomfortable to live with.
Types of Hernia
There are different types of hernia. These include inguinal, hiatal, umbilical, and incisional hernias. Inguinal hernias are the most common type. They make up about 70 percent of all hernia cases. In this type of hernia, the intestines push through a weak spot in the lower abdominal area.
Although not usually life-threatening, hernias can cause a great source of discomfort. Inguinal hernia, for instance, can eventually press on the male’s scrotum causing pain and discomfort.
Seeking Medical Help
Mild hernias can sometimes be managed by avoiding activities that aggravate it such as heavy lifting or straining. Life lifestyle changes (ok) avoiding heavy meals, lying down after a meal, and keeping a healthy body weight may also help.
However, for severe cases of hernia, including those that are considered irreducible (cannot be pushed back to their original location), surgery may be required. Without surgical intervention, severe hernia cases can possibly lead to obstruction in blood circulation and flow of the bowel contents.
Premier Surgical Hernia Center
If a hernia is causing pain, discomfort, or impacting your quality of life, hernia surgery may be recommended. The board-certified General Surgeons of Premier Surgical Hernia Center in Knoxville are experienced in both laparoscopic and open hernia repair options.
Laparoscopic hernia repair is a minimally invasive procedure in which small incisions are made on the abdomen. A special medical device called a laparoscope and other small medical instruments are inserted into these small incisions in order to push back the organs or tissues into their original position. Most patients can resume limited physical activities within a week or so after the procedure.
During an open hernia repair, the surgeon creates an incision on the abdomen or the groin and then pushes the bulging organs or tissues into their original position. Unlike the laparoscopic hernia repair, this traditional hernia repair typically requires several days in the hospital. Patients are encouraged to move around after surgery, but may not be able to resume regular physical activities for 4-6 weeks.
According to the Food and Drug Administration, hernia surgery is one of the most common types of procedures performed. An estimated 1 million Americans per year will undergo hernia surgery.
If your hernia is causing discomfort and affecting your quality of life, talk to your physician about if hernia surgery may be a solution for you, or contact us. The team of experts at Premier Surgical Hernia Center in Knoxville can thoroughly assess your condition and recommend the most suitable treatment option for your condition.