What is a Hernia?

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We have often heard of a hernia but how many of us actually know what a hernia is? This may be a difficult question to come up with an exact answer. However, we need not worry. Today we are fortunate that we have the internet, a very reliable source of everyday reference for many of us.

So, if we do not know what a hernia is, the first thing we will do will be to look up on the Internet. And hopefully, amongst the many sources of information providing an answer to what a hernia is, this article will appear.

Hernia is the protrusion of a body part from the structure that normally contains it. Most of the hernias are a result of a weakness in the abdominal wall.

Various abdominal organs or structures protrude out through the abdominal wall forming a bulge or a lump outside the abdomen. These are the external hernias. The bulge or the lump will contain the herniated structures and the weakened part of the wall.

Sometimes, the herniated structures will be inside the body and may not be visible. These are called internal hernias. Hiatus hernia or hiatal hernia where the upper end of the stomach protrudes into the chest cavity is an example of an internal hernia.

Often, hernias will protrude through naturally weak areas in the structures it contain. The inguinal hernia for example occurs through a weakness in the abdominal wall called the inguinal ring and passes through a tunnel like part called the inguinal canal. Inguinal hernias amount to as much as three fourths of all abdominal hernias and are more common in men compared to women.

Some babies have hernias at birth. When present at birth it is called a congenital hernia.

Incisional hernias occur after surgeries. The structures may pass through the site of a surgical incision because the incision would have made that area weaker. It is also commonly seen after abdominal surgeries.

Most hernias are painless and pain is usually considered an alarming feature. So, if you have a hernia and you have recently started to have pain on it, you should consult a doctor without delay.

Treatment of hernias is usually in the form of surgery. In a hernia surgery, the herniated contents will be pushed back and the weakened area repaired.

If you think you have a hernia, better to get evaluated by your doctor.


Hernia: Causes, Treatment, & Prevention – Healthline

Inguinal hernia News From Mayo Clinic – Mayo Clinic

Infant Hernias: Exploring the Types and Treatments

Category: Health
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