A hernia is a common problem, producing a localised bulge in the abdomen or groin. It is usually harmless and painless but can sometimes cause discomfort and pain. Hernias do not usually cause bothersome symptoms, but abdominal discomfort can indicate a severe problem.
They are usually easy to diagnose, with an exam to look for and feel the lump. Treatment is a choice between careful observation and corrective surgery, either through an open operation or a minimal incision. Inguinal hernia surgery is more public in childhood and old age, while the likelihood of having femoral hernia surgery increases throughout life.
Types of Hernias
Teenagers may have:
1. Inguinal hernias
Inguinal hernias tend to affect boys more than girls. The inguinal hernia, part of the intestine, slips through an opening in the lower abdomen near the groin called the inguinal canal.
In boys, the inguinal canal is a tube between the abdomen and the scrotum, over which the spermatic cord permits (the testicles hang from this cord). In girls, the inguinal canal is a tube through which a ligament passes that hold the uterus in place. Almost all cases of inguinal hernia in adolescents are due to a congenital abnormality of the inguinal canal. Instead of being completely closed, there is a space in the channel through which the intestines can slip.
2. Epigastric hernias
In epigastric hernias, also known as ventral hernias, part of the intestines slips into an opening in the abdominal muscles between the navel and the chest.
Boys are the ones who have to worry the most about this type of hernia since approximately 75% of epigastric hernias affect them. People with this type of hernia might notice a bulge. Surgery (an operation) is the most common way to correct this problem.
3. Hernias incisional
People who have had abdominal surgery can have this type of hernia. In incisional or surgical hernias, part of the intestines slips through the area of the incision (or surgical cut) in the abdomen. In these cases, the operation will weaken the abdominal muscle. And its correction will require another function.
4. Hiatal hernias
These types of hernias occur at the opening of the diaphragm, where the oesophagus (the tube that carries food down) joins the stomach. If the muscle at the diaphragm’s beginning weakens, the stomach’s upper part can push through the diaphragm.
Hiatus hernias are common, although small ones do not usually cause symptoms. Unlike other types of hernias, you won’t notice a bulge in your body, but you may have heartburn, gastritis, and chest pain. Hiatal herniations can treat with medicine and dietary changes, but some require surgery.
Causes of Hernia
Other than an incisional hernia (a complication of abdominal surgery), most cases have no obvious reason for an apparent hernia. The risk increases by age and is higher in men than in women.
Hernias can be congenital (present at birth) or develop in children with a weakened abdominal wall.
Activities and medical problems that increase pressure on the abdominal wall can cause a hernia. These include:
- Straining on the toilet (e.g., due to prolonged constipation)
- Persistent cough
- Initial condition
- Enlargement of the bladder
- Pressure to urinate
- Overweight or obesity
- Stomach fluid
- Lifting heavy weights
- Peritoneal dialysis
- Poor nutrition
- Tobacco use
- Physical effort
- Descended testicles
- Risk factors for hernia
- Risk factors can divide into different types of hernias:
- Risk factors for ruptured hernia
Since an incisional hernia results from surgery, the most prominent risk factor is recent abdominal surgery.
People are most sensitive 3 to 6 months after the procedure, especially if:
- Involved in strenuous activities.
- Gained extra weight
- you are pregnant
All of these issues put additional stress on the tissue as it heals.
Symptoms of Hernia
In many cases, a hernia is nothing more than a painful swelling that does not cause problems and does not require immediate medical attention.
However, a hernia can cause discomfort and pain, and symptoms often worsen with standing, straining, or lifting heavy objects. Most people who notice increased swelling or pain eventually see a doctor.
In some cases, a hernia requires immediate surgery, for example, when part of the intestine is blocked or strangulated by an inguinal hernia.
Immediate medical attention should require if an inguinal hernia results in a severe abdominal condition such as:
The lump may not return to its normal position inside the abdomen.
In these cases, the swelling is usually persistent and sensitive and cannot return to its original position under the skin of the abdomen.
A Hiatal or hiatal hernia can cause acid reflux symptoms, such as heartburn, due to stomach acid backing up into the oesophagus.
It’s normal to wait and see the patient as asymptomatic, but it can put you at risk for certain types of hernias, such as femoral hernias.
Within two years of a femoral hernia diagnosis, 40 per cent develop intestinal strangulation.
It is unclear whether non-emergent surgery is helpful for hernia repair without symptoms and where the hernia may pass through the abdomen.
The American College of Physicians and different medical organisations consider elective surgery unnecessary in such cases, recommending careful observation instead.
Others recommend surgical repair to eliminate the risk of posterior intestinal strangulation, a complication in which the blood supply to a tissue section is censored, requiring an emergency procedure. These health authorities prefer early and routine operations to high-risk emergency procedures.
Hernias usually don’t cause problematic symptoms, but abdominal pain can indicate a more severe problem. With an exam to find and feel the lump, it is generally easy to diagnose it. Treatment is a choice between careful observation and corrective surgery, either through an open operation or a minimal incision.