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>Inguinal Hernia
 Keyhole Surgery


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Inguinal Hernia

WHAT IS A HERNIA?

A hernia is described as the protrusion of an internal organ or tissues through a gap in the wall which should be holding it back.  This is a fairly non-specific description because hernias can occur in many different sites throughout the body.

WHAT IS AN INGUINAL HERNIA?

This is the term given to a specific type of hernia which occurs in the groin. 

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?

Many patients may notice a swelling in the groin and it may appear after lifting a heavy object, but this is certainly not always the case.  There may be some pain or discomfort in groin again after lifting or strenuous activity. 

The lump can come and go.  Often lying flat or pushing on the lump reduces the hernia or makes it smaller.

ARE THERE ANY COMPLICATIONS?

Yes.  The contents of the hernia may become trapped or incarcerated.  This means the lump cannot reduce on lying down or pushing on the swelling. 

Any bowel inside the hernia can be crimped or kinked; this blocks the flow of bowel contents leading to a pressure build up in the bowel.  This is called bowel obstruction and the symptoms are abdominal pain bloating and distension, with or without vomiting.

In addition to this the bowel blood supply can become impaired, this is called strangulation, which if left that area of the bowel dies and becomes gangrenous.  Both bowel obstruction and strangulation are serious complications which usually needs urgent or emergency surgery to correct.

The risks of these complications can be different for different types of hernia and a surgeon can to a certain extent quantify these risks.

WHAT ARE THE AIMS OF SURGERY?

The aims of surgery are to get rid of the symptoms which may be associated with an inguinal hernia and prevent complications of obstruction and strangulation mentioned above.

WHAT ARE THE OPTIONS IF I DO HAVE A HERNIA?

Clearly one of the options is to do nothing and live the lump and or mild discomfort and accepting the risks of a more serious complication.

If surgery is needed a surgical repair can be carried out.  This can be done through a cut in the groin or using laparoscopic or "keyhole" techniques.  Both techniques are usually done as a day case however an over night stay may be required.

A plastic mesh is usually placed in both operations to prevent the hernia from coming back in the future.  This mesh stays in place permanently.



WHAT PROBLEMS CAN OCCUR AFTER OPERATION?

Any operation can be complicated by bleeding and infection but with care and proper precautions these are minimal.

Unfortunately the complications specific to inguinal hernia repair are recurrence, chronic pain and occasional numbness or altered sensation next to the wound. 

Recurrence simply means the hernia comes back after the operation.  This can occur many years after the surgery and may mean a repeat operation.

Chronic pain is persistent pain in the groin after an inguinal hernia operation.  The exact reasons for this problem are not fully understood but it may be due to the use of the plastic mesh or nerves getting involved in scar tissue or a combination of both these mechanisms.  This problem occurs in varying degrees in about 10 -15% of patients.

Numbness is caused by damage to nerves as a consequence of the operation or incision.

There is evidence to suggest some of these problems occur less in patients undergoing a laparoscopic repair.

Your surgeon will discuss these potential problems with you during your consent to surgery.

If you wish to arrange an appointment with Dr. Rob Church Contact Al Zahra Hospital Dubai Call Center

+971 43 786666