Hernias are very common problems, and hernia repairs is one of the most commonly performed operations. Examples of hernias include inguinal, femoral, umbilical, ventral, incisional, spigelian, obturator, and internal hernias. Uncommon types include spigelian, obturator, and internal hernias.
A hernia is commonly a weakness in the abdominal wall that permits contents of the abdominal cavity (e.g. fat, bowel) to escape the confines of the abdominal wall. Hernias are permanent and generally enlarge over time. As hernias enlarge, repair becomes more difficult and the risk of complications increase.
How is the surgery done?
Most hernias are amenable to both laparoscopic and open approaches to repair. In modern hernia surgery, mesh is very often used as a key component of the repair. To achieve the optimal outcome, choice of technique and type of mesh used, should be individualised to your hernia.
What are the risks?
As with any operation, there is a small risk of bleeding and infection. There is also a risk of the hernia repair failing (hernia recurrence). The risk of hernia recurrence can vary considerably between patients and is influenced by the type and size of hernia, as well as your BMI, smoking status and previous surgery.
What to expect after surgery?
After most hernia operations, you may be discharged home on the same day. Simple analgesics are advised for the first week as necessary. Some swelling and bruising at and around the wound is fairly common. It is imperative that you refrain from heavy lifting and exercise for 4 weeks after your hernia repair. Returning to physical activities too soon can disrupt the repair. After one week, you may remove the hospital dressing and leave the wound open without applying any further dressings. If you are unsure when to return for review with Dr. Yew, please call the office to schedule an appointment.