What is a hernia?
A hernia is the protrusion of an organ or tissue through an abnormal opening. As the hernia enlarges, it forms a sac. Internal organs, such as the intestines, can fall into this sac creating one of the major symptoms of hernia – a bulge. A hernia induced bulge is most often visible when standing. Lying down allows the tissue in the sac to return to its proper position and the bulge temporarily disappears.
95% of hernias occur in the groin area and are known as inguinal hernias. Protrusions elsewhere on the abdominal wall are called femoral and umbilical hernias. Highest up of all is the hiatal hernia, which occurs when part of the stomach pushes through the diaphragm separating the chest and the abdomen.
Why do hernias occur?
Hernias can be present at birth or occur over time due to stress and strain on the abdominal wall. Most hernias become apparent later in life because it takes time for the hernial sac to enlarge enough for tissue to fall into it.
What are the treatment options?
Without surgery, you can simply tolerate the hernia. Wearing a truss or binder may temporarily alleviate symptoms but will not cure the hernia. Only surgery can correct the defect.
There are various types of hernia repair operations available. Traditional repair techniques, performed under a general anaesthesia, involve pulling together muscles and ligaments for reinforcement. Since muscles are soft and movable while ligaments remain rigid and stationary, these structures can separate again over time, causing hernia recurrence. In fact, approximately 10% of hernias do reoccur.
Treatment options we offer at the hospital include:
Open Inguinal hernia repair
Open incisional hernia repair
Laparoscopic incisional hernia repair
You can make an appointment with one of our consultant general surgeons by calling 020 8936 1157 or can come along to our FREE hernia walk-in clinic.
FREE Hernia Clinic
We host free hernia walk-in clinics every Saturday morning with Mr Sabu Jacob from 9:30am to 11am in the out-patients department. You can meet with one of our consultants and discuss treatment options.
To book a place at our FREE hernia clinic please call 020 8936 1157.
If you would like to book a consultation in our FREE hernia clinic please call us on 0208 936 1201.
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