What is hernia?
Hernia is squeezing out of an organ or a part of an organ through the tissue wall which normally surrounds it. This usually happens due to the weakening of tissues or the muscular wall.
This can be self-diagnosed but it is always recommended to process every part of it under the eye of a physician. The reason being is that hernias can be one of its many kinds and demanding a particular treatment.
The following pieces of information will give you a clear idea about Hernia:
A hernia is caused when a tissue or muscle wall weakens giving way for an organ to break through it. Though it is a normal disease, it’s certainly a painful one. This disease mostly occurs in the abdominal cavity between the and the hips areas. A hernia can occur both externally as well as internally. The hernia can also arise from past medical conditions and due to extreme burdens on a body.
The most common types of Hernias are:
- Inguinal Hernia:
About 80% of Hernias are diagnosed as Inguinal Hernia. In this condition, the intestine pushes out of the abdominal wall, that contains it. This type of hernia can occur both in women and men. The risk of this hernia increases when one smokes more than usual on a daily basis, pregnant women, and people having chronic constipation.
- Femoral Hernia:
This type of hernia mainly occurs in older women when fatty tissues surrounding the intestines become weak and bulges into the groin which is located at the top of the thigh.
- Umbilical Hernia:
This type of Hernia mainly focuses on the navel (belly button). The fatty tissues, surrounding the intestine or the stomach, becomes faint, which gives rise to this circumstance. This type of hernia is more prominent in the case of females whose cause might be being overweight or having had multiple pregnancies.
- Hiatal Hernia:
This type of Hernia occurs in the diaphragm region. It is a condition where part of the stomach moves up into the chest cavity through a weakened area of the diaphragm.
Diagnosis of Hernia
Diagnosis of hernia is usually done through a physical examination by the doctor. During the examination, the doctor will look for a bulge or a lump like structure in your abdominal or expected areas. They might tell you to perform some physical activities, such as to jump or to twist, to cough or sneeze. As doctors get the alarm when one performs it and has trouble doing things that are easily done under normal circumstances.
The doctor is likely to run a few tests too, such as MRI Scan, CT Scan, or an Abdominal Ultrasound. Having the results through these tests gives the doctor a specific idea of what has to be done and what not to be done.
Symptoms of Hernia
Our body indicates to us when something is not going in the way it should be. As the pain in the abdominal and surrounding area is a trigger itself, you can too, feel a lump or a solid bulge in the area of pain. For example, in the case of Umbilical Hernia, the belly button/navel becomes a lump-like figure.
Hernias are also accompanied by severe nausea and vomiting. Coughing, sneezing, or even brisk walking can cause a lot of pain and discomfort. Though, you might not find the bulge when you lie down. Well, if not treated in a short period of occurrence, the bulge refuses to push back even if you are lying down. Hernias such as Hiatal hernia have some particular symptoms such as chest irritation, trouble in swallowing, and heartburn. Though hernias have no troublesome symptoms in some cases, still it might give rise to serious problems.
Hernias might be a self-diagnosis but certainly cannot be repaired by a layman. Only surgery performed by a medical professional has the capability to remove and repair the growing hernia. An untreated hernia can give trouble to blood circulation to that extent where it is capable of cutting blood circulation to the tissues, doing greater harm.
Two types of surgeries can be performed: open surgery or Laparoscopic Surgery:
In the first step, anaesthesia is induced. The doctors always opt for local anaesthesia over a general one. The surgeon makes an incision (cut) to open the skin of the affected area. Then, under no pressure, they gently push the hernia back into its normal place, tie it off or remove it. The following procedure is similar to any other surgery, after the hernia is well settled into its normal condition, the surgeons close the weak area of tissues or muscles with stitches.
In the case of bigger hernias, the surgeons add a piece of flexible material, made up of threads, which helps the hernia to stay in place and prevent it from coming back.
One is given general anaesthesia over a local one, the surgeons use a harmless gas to inflate the abdomen. Then, the surgeon makes a thorough scan of all the organs, following which a few small cuts are made near the hernia. They insert a tiny tube that has a tiny camera attached to its end, which is called the laparoscope. The surgeon then makes a careful study of the images taken by laparoscope and uses the analysis as a guide to treating the affected area with a flexible material, which is usually a mesh.
The recovery period is usually shorter in laparoscopic surgery as compared to open surgery. The patient is also discharged in a short period which is usually less than a week. One’s condition or type of hernia he/she carries decides whether to go for open or laparoscopic surgery.
If the hernia is given a great amount of pain and discomfort, pressing slightly on the top of it can give you comfort but for a short period. Again, this might be a solution but certainly, it’s not an advised one. The sooner one treats hernia, the better it will be. Hernias can be severe and may have painful consequences and the only way to deal and overcome it is to get surgery.