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1. What is Hernia?

Hernia is a loop of gut bulges out through a weakened part of the abdominal wall. Hernia can occur at different sites of abdominal wall, e.g., epigastric, umbilical, inguinal or femoral.

2. What causes Hernia? (Direct/ Indirect Hernia)

Hernia is caused by congenital or age related weaken abdominal wall. Always, hernia is happened as a result of strenuous or excessive strain activity (e.g., heavy lifting, pregnancy, obesity, chronic cough, or bening prostate hypertrophy), the excessive intra-abdominal pressure squeezes the bowel out from the weakened abdominal wall.

3. How common is the Hernia?

Hernia is very common. By comparison, suffering from hernia of male is around ten times more than that of female. Of unknown reason, right side is more common than the left side.

4. What problems and sign and symptom does Hernia cause?

A lump may be found on the area of epigastric, umbilical, inguinal or femoral which makes discomfort. When lying down, the lump often disappear but reappear again when intra-abdominal pressure increase, e.g., standing, lifting, or coughing. Generally, if the lump is caused by hernia, it can be pushed back to the original place but the weakened abdominal wall is still untreated. The hernia can be re-happened again or even getting worse time by time. If the hernia is not treated properly and promptly, the affected part will allow gut to pass through and case strangulation, absent supply of blood to the loop of gut due to blood vessels are narrowed or blocked, causing the affected gut necrosis, then bowel perforation happens and eventually bacteria leaks from bowel to peritoneum cavity, peritonitis as a result. The patient will feel severe abdominal pain over the hernia site, it can be life threatening .

5. How is the diagnosis of Hernia?

Doctor can make the diagnosis of hernia by physical examination. For further investigation, ultrasound and abdominal X-ray can be performed as providing more information to doctor about the patient hernia situation. In uncertain case, it can by confirmed by Ultrasound/ CT Scan

6. What can be done about my Hernia?

Surgery is the only one way which is effective for hernia repair. A piece of right size surgical mesh is placed to strengthen the weakened part of abdominal wall where the gut bulges out. This surgery can be performed by the way of traditional or laparoscopic.

Traditional hernia repair surgery will have a surgical cut on the hernia area and the wound will take around ten days to heal. Patient is usually required to stay in hospital after the surgery around three to six days for observation. The scar is obvious and around 5cm long.

Laparoscopic hernia surgery is common nowadays as the incision wound is small which around 1.5cm. It makes less post-operation complications, e.g., wound infection, or hemorrhage. Wound pain is much less as the surgical cut is very small. The number of days required to stay in hospital after surgery is around one to three days only, which is much shorter than that of traditional surgery. The scar is unobvious after healed.