What is a groin hernia (inguinal hernia)?

An inguinal hernia happens at the inguinal canal. This is a narrow passage where, in boys, blood vessels supplying the testicle pass through the abdominal wall. In girls, the connection is between the abdomen and labia. The passage usually closes shortly after your child is born. If it remains open, the contents of the abdomen can push down towards the scrotum or labia (see figure 1).

A hernia can be dangerous because the intestines or other structures within the abdomen can get trapped and have their blood supply cut off (strangulated hernia).


Groin Hernia

See large

Figure 1

What are the benefits of surgery?

Your child should no longer have the hernia. Surgery should prevent your child from having any of the serious complications that a hernia can cause.

Are there any alternatives to surgery?

A hernia will not get better without surgery.

What does the operation involve?

Inguinal hernias can be repaired using keyhole surgery but most inguinal hernias in children are repaired through a cut on the groin.

The operation is performed under a general anaesthetic and usually takes about an hour.

Your surgeon will make a cut on the groin and remove the ‘hernial sac’.

What complications can happen?

1 General complications

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection of the surgical site (wound)
  • Unsightly scarring
  • Inflammation

2 Specific complications

  • Developing a collection of blood or fluid
  • Developing a swelling around the testicle
  • Injury to structures within the hernia
  • Injury to nerves
  • Damage of the blood supply to the testicle
  • The testicle may come to lie higher in the scrotum
  • Damage to the tube that carries sperm

How soon will my child recover?

Your child should be able to go home the same day or the day after.

Your doctor will tell you when your child can return to school.

Most children make a full recovery. However, the hernia can come back.


Author: Prof Simon Parsons DM FRCS (Gen. Surg.)

Illustrations: Medical Illustration Copyright © Medical-Artist.com

Issue date
Expire date

How long does it take?

Expected length of hospital stay

Day Case

Fixed prices

Private Groin Hernia treatment prices.

Option In London Outside London Under 16's
Laparoscopic primary repair of inguinal hernia - one side £3200.00 £2610.00 £3200.00
Laparoscopic primary repair of inguinal hernia - both sides £4350.00 £3555.00 £4350.00
Open primary repair of inguinal hernia - both sides £4350.00 n/a £4350.00
Open repair of recurrent inguinal hernia - one side £3250.00 £2925.00 n/a

Groin Hernia - where does it take place?

HCA Healthcare UK hospitals offering General Surgery treatments

See below for the HCA hospitals that offer private Groin Hernia treatment.

Treatments in General Surgery

Private General Surgery treatments at HCA Healthcare UK.

HCA Healthcare UK - Self Pay Treatments

- Call Us

HCA Fixed Price Self Pay makes it easy for you from the first telephone call.

0333 0110 500

Contact Us
HCA Healthcare UK - Self Pay Treatments

- Can we call you back?

Would you like us to call you back at a more convenient time?

Leave your details and one of our team will be in contact.

Call me back
HCA Healthcare UK - Self Pay Treatments - EIDO
HCA Healthcare UK - Self Pay Treatments - The Information Standard
HCA Healthcare UK - Self Pay Treatments - RCS
HCA Healthcare UK - Self Pay Treatments - RCSED
HCA Healthcare UK - Self Pay Treatments - Preoperative The Association
HCA Healthcare UK - Self Pay Treatments - Cristal Mark