Understanding Hernias: What You Need to Know About Hernia Treatment & Repair by 30Seconds Health
A hernia is a condition where an organ pushes through the tissue or muscle that keeps it in its position. For example, the intestine may break through a certain weakened point in the abdominal wall, causing a hernia. Among the several types of hernias that exist, some of the common ones include:
- inguinal hernias
- femoral hernias
- umbilical hernias
- hiatal hernias
Most hernias occur within the abdominal cavity – in other words, between the chest and the hips. They also may appear in the groin area as well as the upper thighs. However, regardless of the type of the hernia, it is important to treat it quickly. As much as hernias may not be immediately life threatening, most hernias won’t likely disappear on their own. In fact, sometimes they require surgery to prevent potentially dangerous complications.
Abdominal wall hernias are common, with a prevalence of 1.7 percent for all ages and 4 percent in people 45 and older. Inguinal hernias account for 75 percent of abdominal wall hernias, with a risk of 27 percent in men and 3 percent in women.
Here's important information you need to know about hernia treatment and repair:
1. What Doctor to See for Hernia Treatment
If you have a hernia, the treatment will probably start with your primary care provider. However, if a surgical procedure is required to repair the hernia, then your primary care provider will refer you to a general surgeon. The most common hernia surgical operations done by general surgeons in the U.S. are ventral hernia repairs. If you think you have a hernia, you should not hesitate to seek help. Otherwise, an ignored hernia can grow larger and more painful. They also can cause other complications, possibly leading to emergency surgery. If a hernia condition is repaired early enough, the repair is usually more successful and less complicated, thus offering higher chances of a complete recovery.
2. Hernia Surgical Treatment
Hernias may not get better without some sort of quality treatment. Your doctor will likely recommend the best therapy to help manage and treat your condition. Your healthcare provider may refer you to a general surgeon, and this could be the only viable treatment option. The surgeon may examine the condition of the hernia and then may administer the surgical hernia repair method that best meets your requirements.
There are three types of hernia surgery that can be performed by a surgeon. These include:
- Open Surgery: The surgeon cuts into the body at the location of the hernia, sets back the protruding tissue into place and ensures that the weakened muscle is stitched back together. To provide some extra support, the surgeon may decide to implant some type of mesh. In some instances, surgical hernia mesh could cause various complications. A reliable source discloses some of these complications as including infections, abdominal pain, implant erosion and bowel obstruction. These often lead to hernia mesh lawsuits by patients. This makes it important to always approach an experienced and reputable surgeon if you consider open hernia surgery.
- Laparoscopic Surgery: This procedure involves normal types of hernia repairs only and no cutting is done to the outside of the abdomen or groin. Instead, tiny incisions are made to insert special surgical tools, then the surgeon uses the tools complete the surgical procedure.
- Robotic Hernia Repair: Similar to laparoscopic surgery, robotic hernia repair is performed with small incisions using a laparoscope. The robotic hernia surgery procedure involves high-precision robotics. The surgeon only handles the surgical instruments while seated at a console in the operating room. This procedure has been commonly used for small hernias as well as weak hernia area treatment. With today’s advancements in technology, however, it can be used to reconstruct the abdominal wall effectively and efficiently.
3. Postoperative Hernia Care
After a hernia repair surgery, post-operative care is crucial – it helps prevent the wound from getting infected. After the surgery, patients are closely monitored by the nursing staff until they are stable. The patient’s progress depends on the type of anesthesia they received, and once they are up and walking around, most patients may be ready to go home. However, resuming normal activities should be advised by your doctor. For example, an activity such as driving may cause pain due to straining the incision and therefore should be avoided.
4. The Role of the Pharmacist
The pharmacist may play a helpful role in the management of patients with hernias. Many are knowledgeable in providing advice on using pain medications, before or after hernia treatment. They may be able to help inform patients to let their surgeon know about whether they were taking OTC or prescribed medications at least one week before surgery. If a patient had surgery, then the pharmacist may be able to help them understand the necessary care products to help the wound heal appropriately.
While hernias don’t usually cause an immediate risk, if not treated early enough, hernias may result in complications. The good news is that hernias are treatable. Regardless of the type of hernia, it is always crucial to seek care from reputable medical professionals.
The content on 30Seconds.com is for informational and entertainment purposes only, and should not be considered medical advice. The information on this site should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease, and is not a substitute for professional care. Always consult your personal healthcare provider. The opinions or views expressed on 30Seconds.com do not necessarily represent those of 30Seconds or any of its employees, corporate partners or affiliates.
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