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Hernias: Causes, Treatment, and Recovery

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Hernias: Causes, Treatment, and Recovery

Hernias are a common medical condition that affects millions of people worldwide — with over 5 million cases occurring in the United States alone. A hernia occurs when an internal organ, such as the intestine, pushes through a weakened area of muscle or tissue that normally contains it. This protrusion can cause discomfort, pain, and even serious complications if left untreated.

Causes of Hernias

Hernias can be caused by a variety of factors, including:

  • Heavy lifting
  • Persistent coughing
  • Obesity
  • Straining during bowel movements
  • Pregnancy
  • Poor nutrition
  • Enlarged prostate
  • Smoking
  • Cystic fibrosis

Treatment of Hernias

The treatment of a hernia depends on the severity of the condition. In mild cases, lifestyle
changes can help to alleviate symptoms. In more severe cases, surgery may be necessary to repair the hernia and prevent complications such as intestinal blockage or strangulation.

Hernia Repair Surgery

Hernia repair surgery is a common procedure that involves either traditional open surgery or minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery. During the surgery, the protruding organ is pushed back into place, and the weakened muscle or tissue is reinforced with a synthetic mesh to prevent future hernias from occurring.

Recovery from Hernia Repair Surgery

Recovery from hernia repair surgery typically takes several weeks, depending on the severity of the hernia and the type of surgery performed. Patients are advised to avoid heavy lifting, strenuous activities, and driving for several weeks after surgery. Pain medication may also be prescribed to manage discomfort during the recovery period.

Prevention of Hernias

While not all hernias can be prevented, there are several steps that individuals can take to
reduce their risk, including:

  • Maintaining a healthy weight.
  • Avoiding heavy lifting, or do so safely.
  • Treating persistent coughs or constipation promptly.
  • Avoiding strain while passing bowel movements.
  • Getting proper nutrition through your diet.

Addressing Your Hernia

If left untreated, a hernia will likely cause extreme discomfort and pain. If you believe you may be suffering from a hernia, it is important that you reach out to your doctor for a proper diagnosis and to begin discussing your treatment options as soon as possible.

Glasgow Clinic Specialty Care is prepared to complete your surgical hernia repair under the expert care of our dedicated and highly experienced general surgeons. Contact us today to schedule your first consultation.