About Hernia Surgery
Hernia Surgery Q & A
What Is a Hernia?
A hernia occurs when a portion of an organ or the intestine finds its way through an opening in a muscle or the fascia that holds it in place. Hernias occur mostly in the abdomen and often appear after a person has undergone surgery or injured themselves by using improper lifting techniques. The openings can be caused by tears, incisions, or weakened areas in the tissue that eventually give way allowing the organ or intestine to push its way through. Once through the opening, the organ or intestine becomes pinched. This can result in swelling that prevents the protrusion from working its back through and returning to its original position.
What Causes a Hernia?
Hernias are caused by openings that form in the abdominal wall, the abdominal muscles or the lining of tissue that surrounds the organs. The openings can be the result of the tissues being torn, either through improper lifting techniques or by weakened areas that give way to the pressure of a muscle or organ trying to force its way through. Muscle tears and openings that are not allowed to heal may continue to worsen over time. If an opening within the abdominal wall is extremely large, surgery may be needed to hold the organ or intestine in place and suture the opening closed so the organ will not be able to become an issue again.
How Are Hernias Repaired?
Hernias need to be repaired with surgery. During the procedure, the part of the body that is protruding through the opening is returned to its original position and sutures are used to hold it in place. Once the opening is cleared, the doctor will line up both sides of the hole or opening in the intestinal wall. The sides may be sutured together or the doctor may use a mesh-like material to bind both sections together. If the opening was caused by a weakness in the tissues, the doctor may choose to secure the opening use both the sutures and the mesh to provide added support and structure to the area.