Symptoms and Causes of Hernia -How to treat it?
A hernia is a very common medical condition, but surprisingly, only about 15% of those see a doctor each year. Not everyone knows that certain hernias might become life-threatening at times. As a result, many people put off visiting their doctor until the problem gets severe, often leading to complications. With the rise in the number of people seeking hernia treatment, it’s critical to raise awareness of this medical problem.
Different Types of Hernia
A hernia occurs when an internal organ pushes through a weakness in the muscle or tissue. Hernias are divided into several categories, including inguinal, femoral, umbilical, and Hiatal hernias. If you suffer from any of these hernia types, it’s critical to get hernia treatment as soon as possible.
- Inguinal hernia
It is the most common type (about 70% of all cases); it appears in the groin area. In this type of hernia, a part of the intestine pushes through a weak spot in the lower abdominal wall into the inguinal canal. This canal typically contains only tissue and a ligament that holds up the testicle in men.
- Ventral/incisional hernia
This type of hernia occurs after an incision has been made in the abdomen during surgery. It’s also called an acquired hernia. It is observed in about 20% of men and 5% of women.
- Femoral hernia
It is much less common than an inguinal hernia; it happens when a part of the intestine protrudes through a weakness in the lower abdominal wall into the femoral canal. This canal contains the femoral artery and vein, which run from the pelvis to the leg.
- Hiatal hernia
This type of hernia is also called a hiatus or diaphragmatic hernia. It occurs when a part of the stomach protrudes through an opening in the diaphragm into the chest cavity.
- Umbilical hernia
An umbilical hernia is relatively common in infants; it happens when a part of their intestine pushes through their abdominal wall near the belly button. Most umbilical hernias close on their own by age four; surgery might be necessary for those that don’t.
Causes and Risk Factors
- Congenital defects
Some babies are born with weak spots in their abdominal walls, leading to a hernia later in life. This type of hernia is called a congenital diaphragmatic hernia.
Being overweight puts strain on the abdominal muscles and can lead to a ventral hernia.
- Chronic cough or sneezing
In case of chronic cough or frequent sneezing bouts, it can also strain the abdominal muscles and lead to a ventral hernia.
The extra weight of pregnancy can cause an abdominal hernia.
With age, the muscles weaken and are more likely to develop a hernia. Most people need hernia treatment at this stage.
Symptoms of Hernia
- A bulge or protrusion in the area of the hernia (most common symptom)
- Pain or discomfort in the area of the hernia
- A burning sensation in the area of the hernia
- A feeling of heaviness in the area of the hernia
- A tugging sensation in the area of the hernia
- Weakness or fatigue.
What are Complications of Hernia?
In most cases, hernias are not dangerous and do not cause serious health problems. However, in case of a strangulated hernia, it can cut off blood flow to the intestine and cause serious health complications. If you have any type of hernia, it’s important to see the doctor so they can diagnose it and decide the course of treatment.
Types of Treatment for Hernia
Hernias can be treated surgically or with nonsurgical methods. Surgeons can either repair the hernia or, in some cases, remove the hernia sac without repairing the hole in the abdominal wall. Nonsurgical treatments include wearing a truss (a device that supports the hernia and keeps it from protruding) or participating in a weight-loss program to reduce strain on the abdominal wall.
However, surgery is the best option for treating a hernia in most cases. The type of surgery will depend on the hernia’s location, its size, and other factors. The most common type of surgery for a hernia is an open surgical repair done through an incision in the skin. Other types of hernia surgery include laparoscopic surgery (done through small incisions in the abdomen) and robotic surgery (done with the help of a robot).
Hernia surgery is safe and effective. Complications from hernia surgery are rare but can include infection, bleeding, or a reaction to the anesthesia.
Prevention Methods for Hernia
Here are some tips on how to prevent a hernia. These include:
- Exercise regularly
- Eat a healthy diet
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Avoid lifting heavy objects
- Don’t smoke
A hernia is a medical condition affecting many people across age groups. It is advisable to consult a surgeon specializing in hernia surgery for comprehensive diagnosis and treatment.