What You Should Know About Hernias


A hernia can cause considerable pain in the abdomen. A surgeon may prescribe a pain medication to alleviate the discomfort. Postoperative wound care should be performed following the surgeon’s instructions, and you should contact your doctor if you notice signs of infection. You may be limited in movement for a few weeks after the hernia repair. You should avoid vigorous exercise and lifting anything heavier than 10 pounds (equivalent to one gallon of milk).

Hernia symptoms

There are many hernia symptoms that may not be associated with a hernia. The pain varies in intensity and can be dull, sharp, or throbbing. Some patients report feeling no pain at all. Typically, pain is felt when tissues with nerve endings are stretched or pulled back. Hernia symptoms tend to increase with straining and bending, and may increase when an infant cries or coughs.

Hernia symptoms are common and can be caused by various things, including constipation. People with constipation can have a hernia as a result of straining during bowel movements. A doctor will perform a physical exam to diagnose the condition. A doctor may also feel for a bulge in the abdominal area and esophagus. Surgical treatment is required for hernias that are large enough to cause pain or restrict bowel movement.


There are many causes of hernia, including pregnancy, peritoneal dialysis, multiple pregnancies, and obesity. In some cases, the condition is genetic, but more often than not, hernias are the result of a weak abdominal wall. Symptoms can be vague or visible and increase with bending or pressure. You may experience chest pain or difficulty swallowing and constipation.

Femoral hernia occurs when the femoral canal – which passes through the lower abdomen and into the scrotum – becomes large enough to allow abdominal contents to protrude. Women are particularly vulnerable to this type of hernia, and not all are strangulated. MRI scans can be used to confirm a hernia’s location and determine the exact cause of your pain.

Other causes of hernia include trauma to the abdominal cavity or a preexisting medical condition. A hernia can be an incisional, diaphragmatic, or thoracic hernia. The causes of hernias depend on the type of surgery performed. Most hernias can be repaired through a laparoscopic procedure, although open surgery may also be recommended if the hernia is too severe.


Hernia repair is a common surgical procedure performed to repair the hernia. This procedure involves a camera attached to a tiny telescope, or laparoscope, which is inserted through a small incision in the abdominal wall. Surgical tacks are used to hold the mesh in place behind the abdominal muscles. Most patients undergo this procedure under general anesthesia, although they may need bladder catheterization.

During a physical exam, doctors may detect a hernia. Further tests may be needed to diagnose the condition. These tests can include ultrasounds and barium X-rays, which produce pictures of the abdominal cavity. Endoscopy, which looks inside the abdomen, is another common test for diagnosing hernia. MRIs can also detect tears in the abdominal muscles, which can lead to a hernia.


In the early stages of a hernia, lifestyle changes can help alleviate symptoms. While lifestyle changes alone won’t cure your hernia, they can greatly decrease your risk. Avoid large meals and avoid bending over immediately after eating. If you have a hernia, avoid eating spicy food and limit your bending after meals. Exercises to strengthen the muscles surrounding the hernia are also important. To prevent hernia, consult a physical therapist for advice on what exercises to do. Smoking can also trigger a hernia and should be avoided.

Hiatal hernia is one type of hernia and is caused by an abnormal opening in the diaphragm. When this happens, the top portion of the stomach pushes through the diaphragm. The esophagus passes through the hiatus and pushes into the stomach, creating a protrusion. There are two types of hernia in this area: primary and secondary.

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