Hernia

A hernia is a condition where an organ forces through an opening in the muscle or connective tissue which is responsible for holding it in place.

 The hernia is not a life-threatening condition but needs medical/surgical intervention to prevent complications.

This is a condition where an organ forces through an opening in the muscle or connective tissue which is responsible for holding it in place. This is not a life-threatening condition but needs medical/surgical intervention to prevent complications.

Are you looking for a doctor consultation? Consult our doctor at Medfin to know your treatment options.

What is a Hernia?


A hernia is a condition where an organ forces through an opening in the muscle or connective tissue which is responsible for holding it in place. This is not a life-threatening condition but needs medical/surgical intervention to prevent complications.


What are the causes of hernia?


Consistent pressure and muscle weakness in a particular area of the body contribute to the formation of hernia. They may develop rapidly or over a long period, determined by their causative factors.

The common causes of hernias are:

  • Lifting heavy weights either for exercising or for work
  • Chronic cough caused by conditions such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD)
  • Constipation over a prolonged period of time, resulting in an increase in abdominal pressure
  • Multiple pregnancies.
  • ObesityAscites or fluid accumulation in the abdomen.
  • Post damage from a surgery or injury.
  • A congenital condition, where the hernia is formed in the womb during developmental stages and is present at birth.

Associated risk factors:

  • Family history.
  • Smoking (weakens the connective tissue).
  • Premature birth or low birth weight.

Most hernias do not cause any significant symptoms. It may be diagnosed during a routine medical examination for some other ailment until which time it stays undetected.


What are the different types of hernias and their symptoms?


Inguinal Hernia:

This is the most common type of hernia seen more frequently in males than in females. 

In males the inguinal canal is a pathway for the spermatic cord and blood vessels which leads to the testicles and in women, the inguinal canal has the round ligament which supports the uterus. 

In this type of hernia, the fatty tissue or a part of the intestine protrudes into the groin.

The symptoms of inguinal hernia are :

  • It may present as a bulge in the area on either side of the pubic bone, which becomes more evident when you're upright, or while coughing or straining
  • Pain or discomfort in your groin
  • A heavy or dragging sensation in the groin
  • Weakness or pressure in the groin
  • Sometimes the intestines may move down into the scrotum which may be associated with pain and swelling around the testicles
An inguinal hernia isn't necessarily dangerous. At times it can lead to life-threatening complications.

Femoral Hernia: Here the bulge or the swelling is seen in the groin and affects older women.

Umbilical Hernia: Here, the swelling is seen through the belly button (umbilicus, navel)

Hiatal or diaphragmatic Hernia: In this hernia, a part of the stomach will be pushed into the chest cavity through an opening in the diaphragm (the horizontal sheet of muscle that separates the chest from the abdomen). 

It is commonly seen in older patients( >50 years and in obese patients).

 The symptoms of a hiatal hernia will be different and more specific. The lump formed here pushes through the diaphragm, causing chest pain, trouble swallowing, and heartburn.

Incisional Hernia: Here the tissue protrudes through the site of an abdominal scar from a previous or old abdominal or pelvic operation.

Epigastric Hernia: In this type, the fatty tissue protrudes through the abdominal area between the navel and lower part of the sternum (breastbone)

Spigelian Hernia: Here the intestine pushes through the abdomen at the side of the abdominal muscle, below the navel.


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