YOUR HERNIA FAQ'S,
Groin and pelvic pain, either acute or chronic, have long been underserved conditions. The reasons for this are unclear but may derive from the fact that these entities do not fall into the traditional categories of illnesses/diagnosis taught during medical school or residency. We at GAPPI are fully committed to the diagnosis and treatment of this spectrum of illnesses.
Groin and pelvic pain can be caused by a multitude of underlying issues. These include: Inguinal Hernia, Femoral Hernia, Obturator Hernia, nerve entrapments, Aponeurotic Plate inflammation or injury, Adductor Tendonopathy, as well as hip, Urologic, and Gynecologic conditions.
A hernia is an opening anywhere in the body where there is a cavity; hernias are most
commonly in the abdominal cavity where abdominal contents like fat or intestine can
move into the opening.
The most common hernias are inguinal and umbilical hernias.
An inguinal hernia is an opening in the inguinal area, which is in the groin. It can present like a bulge or fullness in the groin, or just pain in the groin or down to the testicle (in males).
An umbilical hernia as an opening under the belly button. A bulge can occur in the form of an “outie” belly button which, technically, is a hernia.
Other hernias can develop in the diaphragm (hiatal hernia), the pelvis (obturator hernia), below the groin crease (femoral hernia), in the midline between the rectus muscles (ventral hernia), and other various places in the abdominal cavity.
Hernias develop where there is a weak spot in the abdominal wall. Natural weak spots are the inguinal area, as this is where there is an opening for structures in both males and females, and the umbilicus, as this is where the umbilical cord entered the body.
Usually lifting heavy items, and creating significant intra-abdominal pressure, is one of the factors causing hernia formation.
Increases in intra-abdominal pressure, as above, in combination with genetics and body habitus are the common causes.
Weight is a factor in hernia formation, as the greater the weight, the more intra-abdominal pressure which translates force to the abdominal wall.
Generally, all hernias should be repaired unless there are overriding medical contraindications to the surgery. Hernias that are symptomatic should be repaired.
Surgical repair is required. Currently, open and laparoscopic methods are used. Mesh is often used. The method of repair is based on hernia location, size of hernia defect, body type, and other factors.
Open refers to the approach used. It is the original method before the advent of surgery with scopes (known as laparoscopic or minimally invasive surgery). Open surgery requires an incision.
The type of hernia, patient preference, status of the patient’s health, and surgeon experience all comprise the answer. Currently, regarding inguinal hernia, the literature leans toward laparoscopic repair. The final decision as to which approach should be utilized should be made in consultation with your surgeon.
Hernia repairs do not always require mesh, but recurrence rates without mesh in many settings are higher. Mesh does have drawbacks however, and pre-operative discussion with the surgeon is important.
patients share their experiences
SCHEDULE A CONSULTATION
For patients interested in a surgical approach, it is recommended that a consultation with Dr. Iraci be scheduled first in order to discuss the symptoms one is experiencing, the groin or pelvic condition, and the treatment options available. This is the best first step to clarify the entire treatment process that will ensure the highest quality of care and options available. Your first consultation is free.