What are the benefits of surgery?
You should no longer have the hernia. Surgery should prevent the serious complications that a hernia can cause.
Are there any alternatives to an open inguinal hernia repair?
Inguinal hernias can be repaired using keyhole surgery.
You can sometimes control the hernia with a truss (padded support belt) or simply leave it alone. It will not get better without surgery.
What does the operation involve?
Various anaesthetic techniques are possible. The operation usually takes about 45 minutes.
Your surgeon will make a cut on your groin and remove the ‘hernial sac’. They will strengthen the muscle layer with stitches, usually inserting a synthetic mesh to cover the weak spot, and close your skin.
What complications can happen?
1 General complications
- Unsightly scarring
- Blood clots
- Infection of the surgical site (wound)
2 Specific complications
- Developing a lump under your wound
- Injury to structures that come from the abdomen and are within the hernia
- Temporary weakness of your leg
- Continued discomfort or pain in your groin
- Injury to nerves
How soon will I recover?
You should be able to go home the same day.
Increase how much you walk around over the first few days.
You should be able to return to work after two to four weeks depending on the extent of surgery and your type of work.
Regular exercise should help you to return to normal activities as soon as possible. Before you start exercising, ask the healthcare team or your GP for advice.
The hernia can come back.
Author: Prof Simon Parsons DM FRCS (Gen. Surg.)
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