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Hernia Repair


Information on NTMC Hernia Repair

Many patients come to the North Texas Medical Center for hernia repair procedures. This page provides background information on hernia repairs and an overview of what patients can expect from the process.

Overview of Hernia Repair
As explained on WebMD, hernias come about when “fatty tissue or an organ pushes” its way through a weak point in the muscle wall or tissue that surrounds it. Hernias typically do not resolve themselves; instead, they tend to get larger and more disruptive.

Not all hernias call for surgery, but these warning signs usually lead doctors to recommend a hernia repair procedure:

  • The hernia is causing pain and/or growing in size.
  • The hernia is strangulated, meaning the tissue involved is cut off from its blood supply.
  • Incarceration occurs, meaning tissues are trapped in the abdominal wall. (This can be a precursor to strangulation.)

What Is Inguinal Hernia Repair & How Long Does It Take?

Inguinal hernia repair is a common course of action. An inguinal hernia, which affects the inguinal canal, can be repaired with open surgery. As described on WebMD, this procedure involves the surgeon making “an incision in your groin” and putting the protruding tissue back in its proper place. Then, mesh is used to strengthen the weakened area. The procedure involves general anesthesia or local anesthesia plus sedation, and it usually takes between 30 and 45 minutes.

What is Laparoscopic Hernia Repair & How Long Does It Take?

Another variant, covered here by the JAMA Network, is laparoscopic hernia repair. During this procedure, the surgeon creates three tiny incisions in the abdomen, then inserts a laparoscope—a flexible, tube-like instrument with a camera, which allows the surgeon to view his or her actions. The surgeon removes the defect and then inserts a prosthetic mesh. This type of surgery is a particularly good option, per Kaiser Permanente, if multiple hernias are present. The procedure usually takes less than an hour, but it can take longer for a variety of reasons.

How Long Does It Take to Recover from Hernia Surgery

Michigan Health advises that patients who undergo open hernia repair surgery “are able to go home the same day” and that recovery takes roughly three weeks. At that time, patients can return to light activity but should wait six weeks to partake in strenuous activity. Laparoscopic surgery may offer a recovery time up to a week shorter, but each patient’s doctor will provide advice on their specific recovery.