Hernias are a common yet often uncomfortable health issue to deal with. While most are not life threatening, they do require treatment. This is because hernias do not actually go away by themselves.
There are different treatments available, with surgery typically being the last resort. A couple of different surgical methods can be used to repair a hernia, so which one will you need? Here, we’ll look at what hernias are and when surgery might be needed to repair them. You will also learn more about the surgical methods performed.
What is a hernia?
A hernia develops when an organ or piece of fatty tissue protrudes through a weak part of the muscle wall or connective tissue. The majority tend to develop within the abdomen, though they can also occur in the groin or upper thigh.
Although they are not usually serious, they will not clear up by themselves. This means you will need to seek treatment. The actual treatment you will need will depend upon the type of hernia you develop.
When might surgery be required?
There are lots of treatment options available for hernia repair. The majority are treated using non-surgical methods such as topical creams and medications. However, in some cases surgery will be required.
The most common reasons surgery may be needed to treat a hernia include:
- If the hernia is increasing in size
- The tissue becomes trapped or incarcerated
- The hernia is strangulated
- It is causing a lot of pain or discomfort
Your doctor will be able to determine whether or not surgery will be required. If it is, there are different procedures that could be carried out.
Understanding the different surgical methods
There are two main types of surgery you can undergo for the treatment of a hernia. These include open surgery and laparoscopic surgery. The type you’ll need will depend upon the type, size and location of the hernia. Other factors such as your lifestyle, age and health will also be considered.
The most common hernia repair procedure carried out is the open surgery method, known as the Lichtenstein tension-free mesh repair. This is a highly effective technique that Mr Smith frequently carries out on his patients. He specialises in ventral, incisional, umbilical and inguinal hernia repairs, with the open surgical technique proving to be especially effective.
Studies have shown that the Lichtenstein method is a safe, simple, and effective method of treatment. It has shown to have a low morbidity rate, alongside a low recurrence rate. For this reason, it has been the most popular choice for surgeons since 1994.
The procedure itself is carried out under general anaesthetic. An incision is made, before the hernia is pushed back into place. It will either be tied off or removed before the weak part of the muscle is closed. If the hernia is large, a flexible mesh will be inserted to provide support.
If you are an ideal candidate for hernia surgery, Mr Smith will be able to advise you which procedure is right for you. Call us on 020 3770 5864 to arrange an appointment at the HCA Lister Hospital Clinics (Chelsea Outpatient Centre and Chiswick Medical Centre) or call 020 7808 2785 to book a consultation with Mr Myles Smith at the Royal Marsden Hospital.