ernia is a very common disease that can occur to both men and women. In India, it is quite prevalent. So, laparoscopic hernia surgery is the most advanced procedure that completely cures hernia. Hernias usually do not get better on their own.
What are the reasons you need hernia surgery?
If any of these symptoms appear, your doctor will likely recommend hernia surgery:
- Intestine or part of intestines gets trapped in the abdominal wall which is called incarceration. It should be treated immediately because it leads to strangulation which can be life-threatening as it stops the blood flow to the tissues.
- Strangulated organs need immediate attention otherwise they cause permanent damage. Consult the doctor at the same time if you have a fever or nausea.
- If the hernia is causing pain and discomfort, it is better to get the surgery done.
Many people every year get laparoscopic surgery in India. The risk of hernia often increases with age and is more common in men than in women. Hernia can also be congenital or develop in children with a weak abdominal wall. You are at higher risk of hernia if:
- Your age of 35 or above with weak muscle tissues.
- Family history
- Strain yourself by lifting heavyweight
- Suffer from abdominal injury or accident before
- Heavy smoker
Femoral hernia is the most common hernia found in women. The prime causes are:
- Chronic constipation
- Lifting heavyweight
Diagnosis of hernia
Doctors typically diagnose hernia by collecting medical history and some physical test. They also ask for imaging tests to help the doctor diagnose hernia when the bulge is small. At times symptoms may be confused with kidney stones or even endometriosis.
CT Scan: it checks the cause of abdominal pain and swelling. It uses X-ray to form images of the abdomen.
MRI: This happens when there is severe pain in the abdomen and there is no clear visible bulge. It happens mostly with athletes. It is used to detect the tear in the abdominal tissues and muscles.
Ultrasound: It is usually done in case of women who are of childbearing age. It checks the pelvic condition such as ovarian cysts or fibroid.
Laparoscopic Hernia Surgery
Laparoscopy is a minimally invasive surgery where the hernia is repaired using a laparoscope, a thin tube-like instrument that has a camera attached on top of it. The procedure is performed under general anesthesia. The doctor evaluates your general state of health, which includes a history and physical examination.
The doctor inflates the abdomen with a harmless gas mostly carbon dioxide so that he can look into the defected area easily. Then there are 2-3 incisions made to insert the laparoscope and other surgical instruments. The laparoscope is inserted in the abdomen through one of the incisions that projects the inside view on the screen. Then the inner lining of the abdomen is cut to expose the weakness and mesh is placed to cover the defects in the wall and strengthen the tissue. After the surgery, the abdominal incisions are closed with the help of surgical glue which is again harmless.
The laparoscopic surgery is a painless procedure. It may be the best choice for people whose hernia recur after open hernia surgery and people with a hernia on both sides (bilateral).
In laparoscopic hernia surgery, there is no need to make extra incisions to treat the second hernia. This is the biggest disadvantage of open hernia surgery which needs another surgery.
Advantages of Laparoscopic surgery
- Laparoscopic hernia surgery causes less pain
- Recovery is faster in laparoscopic surgery (1-2 weeks) than open hernia surgery (3-4 weeks)
- Hospital stay is short (24-48 hours) while in open surgery patient has to stay for 3-4 days after the surgery in the hospital.
- It is possible to check the hernia on the opposite side at the same time, unlike open surgery.
- Minimal postoperative pain.
- Excellent cosmetic results.
- Repair of recurrent hernia is easier using laparoscopic procedure than open surgery.
Recovery and support after laparoscopic hernia surgery
Doctors encourage most people to return to most of their regular activities as soon as possible. The doctor recommends you to regularly walk during recovery as it does not put a strain on the abdomen. In fact, it encourages blood circulation.
While the surgery site heals, you must limit some activities such as lifting heavy weights. Also, consult the doctor for your sexual activities.
Get the best treatment for hernia by seeing a health care provider. Make a not of symptoms that includes how it all started, how it got worse, the key information about hernia in your body, medical history (if any). Share all the information with the doctor such as current medication, supplements and how do you feel. The doctor is likely to ask several questions in return. Remember, if you experience nausea, vomiting or bulge of the organ, get emergency medical care.