There are 2 types of hernia surgery that may be performed. Your doctor will advise you on the most suitable option for you, based on the size, type and location of the hernia. Your health and age will also be considered.
Preparing for a hernia surgery
Prior to either form of surgery, your doctor may advise tests to ensure you are healthy enough for surgery. This includes checking for any conditions that may make surgery inadvisable.
For 1 week prior to surgery, you will be asked to stop taking aspirin, ibuprofen and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs).
During a hernia surgery
This is performed under general anaesthesia. The surgeon will make an incision where the hernia is located. Next, the protruding tissue will be gently pushed back in its proper place. If this is not possible, the hernia will be tied off or removed. To prevent it from recurring, the weakened muscle wall is stitched and sometimes reinforced with a mesh for additional. support.
Also performed under general anaesthesia, this form of surgery involves smaller incisions when compared to open surgery. Using a flexible tool called a laparoscope, which has an attached camera, the surgeon will insert surgical tools via these incisions and use the camera view to perform the same function as open surgery.
After a hernia surgery
Once at home, be sure to practice good hygiene to prevent infection and avoid heavy lifting for at least two weeks. Speak to your doctor about what activities you can perform safely, and inform your doctor immediately if there are signs of infection or increased pain.
Activities that increase intra-abdominal pressure can cause a hernia to recur. This includes certain health conditions too, such as obesity, chronic cough and constipation. Taking steps to avoid these things can help to lower the risk of a hernia recurring.
Recovery period for a hernia surgery
Recovery time varies from person to person, depending on the type of hernia and type of procedure. Generally, patients recover more quickly following laparoscopic surgery and may be allowed to return home on the same day. However, if additional procedures were required, you may need to stay in the hospital for a few days.
Risks/complications of a hernia surgery
Hernia is a common condition and hernia surgery is considered to be safe. However, all forms of surgery are associated with potential risks such as infection and blood clots, and there is the possibility that hernia may recur after surgery.