Incisional Hernia: Symptoms, Causes, Risk Factors, and Treatment

An incisional hernia develops in a person who previously has had abdominal surgery. It happens when the internal organ or the tissue obtrudes through the abdominal wall. The person who happens to observe any related symptoms after the surgery should immediately seek help from the general surgeon in Lahore.

What are the symptoms/indications of incisional hernia?

The symptoms include:

  • The main symptom is a noticeable bulge near the incisional site
  • The person has a fever and feels nauseous
  • Constant burn near the incision 
  • Discomfort and pain
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea 
  • Increased heart rate than normal

What factors can lead to incisional hernia?

Incisional hernias are caused when after the surgery, the abdominal wall doesn’t heal properly. The abdominal muscles become weak and allow the tissue or the organ to form a hernia.

There are various reasons due to which the healing process is interrupted, such as; adding pressure on the abdomen, engaging in excessive physical activities, exercising, lifting weights, and getting pregnant before the cut is healed. Other risk factors that may hinder the healing process include obesity, diabetes, infection in the body, smoking, and the use of immunosuppressant medications. 

Lastly, if the sewing technique to close the incision isn’t accurate can also slow down the healing process and contribute to the formation of a hernia. Hernias usually form after the surgery and can even develop after six months.

What are the categories of hernia?

Hernias are generally divided into two categories, which are as follows:

  • Reducible Hernia: The reducible hernia can be pushed back by applying pressure to it.
  • Irreducible Hernia: The irreducible hernia is also known as incarcerated hernia. It is not possible to push it back in the abdomen by applying pressure. It can lead to bowel obstruction, causing further medical issues.

How to treat reducible Hernias?

The hernia is more likely to be treated through surgery. The person having a reducible or small hernia is prone to experience pain and discomfort. 

The surgery can be delayed, but it is best to consult the surgeon and get it treated. The medical expert would consider the medical history and additional health issues before going for the surgery. However, If the person wants to delay the surgery, the medical expert would advise using a special belt to apply pressure on the hernia. It is necessary to treat it before the size increases, as it would worsen the condition and cause additional pain and discomfort.

How to treat incarcerated/irreducible hernias?

Irreducible Hernias are treated with surgery. The medical expert considers multiple factors such as medical history and the size of the hernia before planning the surgery. 

The two main techniques used to treat irreducible hernias are open repair and Laparoscopic repair. In the open repair technique, the surgeon would move the organ or the tissue resulting in the hernia back in the abdomen and sew the opening. 

Laparoscopic repair is less invasive and results in quick recovery as compared to the open repair technique. In this process, the surgeon makes multiple incisions and inserts the tube, so the air can pass through and increase visibility. The surgeon inserts the tools including the camera, that helps in performing the procedure.

When to contact the doctor?

Hernias can be life-threatening. Therefore, it is essential to follow the proper medical guideline given by the medical expert to avoid any complications. 

However, the person who has had abdominal surgery and experiences any of the mentioned symptoms should consult the general surgeon in Islamabad to understand their condition and get immediate treatment to overcome further complications leading to more consequential health issues.