Hernia signifies a bulge of tissue, usually the intestines or fat under the skin through a natural or acquired opening in the abdominal wall.
CAUSES: it is formed due to congenital weakness of soft tissue structures, or it is developed over a lifetime. It is usually located in the groins, around the belly button or on in the area where surgical procedure was previously done. Location determines the name of the hernia. There are areas on the abdominal wall that are predisposed to develop hernia due to their anatomic build.
RISK FACTORS: age, sex (groin hernia is 10 times more common in men, while femoral hernia is more common in women), increase in abdominal pressure due to lifting heavy objects, difficulties in defecation and urinating due to constipation, strong and long-lasting cough, obesity, pregnancy.
SYMPTOMS: bulging area, pain, feeling of weight in the groin while standing or straining, swelling can lower towards the scrotum in men. Incarcerated hernia – acute, urgent condition: strong groin or abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, flatulence, fever, increased heart rate.
Hernia can be completely cured only surgically, and it is, at the same time, one of the most common surgical procedures.
Surgical procedures can be divided into tension, tension-free and laparoscopic.
Tension procedures are done by pulling the surrounding tissue on the hernia opening after which a scar is formed that prevents reoccurrence of hernia. The most famous ones are hernioplasty according to Bassini and Shouldice. Nowadays they are performed only in younger patients. This procedure has a large number of relapse, up to 15%.
Tension-free procedures are done with the aid of synthetic surgical material in a form of a mesh.
One of standard surgical tension-free procedures done under general intravenous, or possibly, local anesthesia.