‘More awareness needed on minimally invasive surgeries available for hernias’

Chennai: Estimates suggest that 25 per cent males and 2 per cent females develop inguinal hernias. Most of the hernias occur in the groin area in adults.

The need of the hour is to raise awareness around the innovative and minimally invasive surgery (MIS) options available for hernias.

One such option is the laparoscopic/MIS inguinal hernia repair. This procedure is faster and helps people lead a better quality of life post surgery.

Hernia is a bulge which appears due to protrusion of fat or intestines through a defect/hole in the abdominal wall. It can affect newborn children and the elderly alike. Hernia is usually seen as a swelling in lower abdomen or through umbilicus or in a previous surgicalscar.

Speaking about this, Dr N Saravanan, bariatric and laparoscopic surgeon, said, “Smoking, obesity, old age, routine lifting of heavy weight and chronic cough /¬†constipation /difficulty in passing urine are the risk factors for developing hernias.In early stages, it commonly presents as mild discomfort and painless swelling which disappears spontaneously on lying down. As the day progresses, it may cause pain when the intestine within the hernia gets obstructed or blood supply to fat inside hernia decreases. In this situation, swelling does not reduce spontaneously.If you have any of these symptoms, it is better to consult your doctor. In some instances, a hernia-related condition called bowel incarceration may develop and require immediate surgery.”

Adding further, Dr Saravanan, said, “If hernias are not repaired, there is a risk of bulging tissue getting trapped inside it and cutting off the blood supply. This is referred to as strangulation. In such cases, an immediate surgery may be needed. All types of hernias can be managed laparoscopically with or without mesh placement. Patientmay be discharged home within a day of the procedure. With laparoscopic hernia treatment, the patient can return early to normal day to day activities and lead a better quality of life.”