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What’s the hernia?

An Internal organ or internal fatty tissue pushes through an opening (HERNIA DEFECT) where abdominal muscle has been weakened. The hernia is classified according to where the defect is located in the abdomen. For example, the groin hernia is called inguinal hernia, hernia occurring around the stoma is called parastomal hernia, and the hernia occurring at naval is called umbilical hernia. The hernia is not normal. It is caused by combination of few factors:

  • Chronic coughing

  • Chronic constipation

  • Pregnancy

  • Abnormal fluid accumulation inside the abdomen, such as ascites or peritoneal dialysis

  • Lifting Heavy Weight

  • Overweight

  • Smoking

  • Previous abdominal surgery

What symptoms can I develop from hernia?

Sometimes the hernia is incidentally discovered during physical examination without causing any symptom. However, the common hernia symptoms are listed below:

  • Abdominal pain or discomfort over the hernia site

  • A protruding lump, especially when standing up, coughing or straining.

  • Tenderness over the hernia site

Once you develop symptoms, you shall consider treating this condition. It is because you have higher chance an internal organ suddenly gets stuck in the hernia. The blood supply to this organ will be disrupted, and the organ will become non-viable within very short period of time. It can be a life-threatening condition when the organ is non-viable. You shall seek urgent medical treatment if you develop these late symptoms

  • Abdominal distension

  • Persistent severe pain over the hernia site

  • Swelling and skin discolouration over the lump

  • Hernia suddenly becomes irreducible 

  • Nausea and vomiting

What is the treatment option?

Hernia belt, hernia truss or hernia binder can sometimes help with your symptoms. Unfortunately, hernia will not disappear without surgery. 

Dr Yeh is experienced in both open and laparoscopic abdominal wall hernia repair. In order to reduce the chance of recurring hernia, a piece of mesh may need to be inserted at the time of surgery. The mesh will help the body to heal stronger over the hernia defect. The main difference between two procedures is the recovery time, cosmetic outcome and wound infection rate.  Patients who have had laparoscopic repair recover faster and have less pain and smaller incision. Wound infection rate is lower in laparoscopic surgery. Open or laparoscopic surgery does not effect on the hernia recurrence rate.  

Laparoscopic surgery may not be safe to perform in certain situation. In our practice, Dr Yeh ensures that you are well informed about all the treatment options, and the surgery is tailored towards your condition.

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