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Misleading Information You Should Be Aware Of About Hernia Surgery

In simple language, hernia is a protrusion of an internal organ into a region inside the body where it should not ideally. It most commonly occurs in the abdomen when either a part of the intestine or abdominal fat pokes through the muscle wall of the abdomen. They are mostly painful and require surgery for treatment or repair. Hernias are common and occur both in men and women, only inguinal hernia in the groin is more common in men than women.

Hernias are ordinarily repaired by surgical procedures that are not complicated and only require a day’s admission in the hospital in this day. Treatments are very less invasive these days and less expensive. Hernias are usually treated by laparoscopic procedures that heal in no time! However, there are several myths surrounding this condition that puts more people in uncomfortable positions than anything else! Misleading information is often to blame when it comes to patients being apprehensive about opting for surgery and look for non-invasive treatments. Lets look at the most common myths surrounding hernia repairs.

1.​ Hernias will heal on their own

Once a hernia develops, it cannot be left alone. Hernias may harbor several complications like strangulation that is even life threatening. Hernias are very painful and the only way to repair them is undergoing a surgery, which actually are pretty simple and less complicated these days!

2.​ Heavy weightlifting in gym can cause hernia

This is only partially true. While heavy weightlifting in the gym may cause hernia, the muscle weakness is usually already present in the body. Especially in men, the testicles are present inside the body of a foetus and descend just before birth. The muscle walls should completely heal prior to birth but sometimes, that doesn’t happen and a small gap is left in the muscles as a birth defect. So, lifting weights in the gym without a support to the genitals may cause an inguinal hernia to occur if you already are susceptible to one.

3.​ Repair technique matters

Whether you go in for traditional non-mesh technique to restore normal anatomy or for mesh repair of hernia, the technique does not matter as much as the skill of the surgeon. Research has shown that the success or failure rate for either of the techniques is not very different and what is most important is the handling of the surgery by the surgeon. The more experienced and efficient the surgeon better is the success rate of hernia repair. The superiority of mesh repairs over tissue repairs is a misnomer.

4.​ Exercise prevents hernia

While exercise is great for a fit and healthy body and maintaining ideal body weight, it cannot prevent hernia by strengthening of abdominal muscle walls. If the patient has a hole in the wall due to a birth defect or is hereditarily susceptible to weaker abdominal muscle walls, at some point of life, hernia will develop. Heavy coughing for long durations or lifting heavy weight also makes a person prone to developing hernia. Regular exercise however, keeps a person generally fit, which may significantly help in post hernia surgery recovery.

5.​ Hernia surgeries are extremely painful

Hernia surgeries are performed under general anesthesia and patients do not feel any pain during the surgery. Moreover, laparoscopic or minimally invasive techniques opted by the surgeon minimizes pain even after surgery and hastens recovery considerably. Open hernia surgeries do involve a sizable incision in the abdominal region and are a little painful during recovery. However, laparoscopic techniques work with very small incisions and are easier to manage and lesser painful during recovery period.

6.​ Post hernia surgery recovery period is very long

Minimally invasive or laparoscopic hernia repair surgeries ensure that the patients are back on their feet in a day or two. They have quicker recovery times and are generally more successful than open hernia repair. Also, recurrences of hernia after surgery too is generally 5 % lesser in the case of laparoscopic techniques as compared to open hernia repair.

7.​ Hernia always recurs

Recurrences in hernia are not very common. If a skilled surgeon addresses the issue in the right manner, chances of recurrences are negligible. Certain patients or conditions demand an open surgery, or mesh based repair or simple laparoscopic repair. The consulting doctor and surgeon must opt for the most suitable repair technique depending upon the level of complication and status of the patient. Sometimes, obese patients or those who have undergone a number or previous abdominal surgeries may not be eligible for minimally invasive procedures. In such cases, open hernia repairs are mostly opted for. Thus, the choice of right procedure greatly influences the chances of recurrences of hernia in a patient.

Hernias may be very uncomfortable and opting for this elective surgery at the right elective surgery centre or a hospital as early as possible post detection is the best way ahead! Clear your minds off these myths and be worry-free about hernia repairs!