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What Is A Hernia And How Are They Caused?



Hernias occur after the body is put under excessive amounts of strain, as the contents of a cavity located in an area of the lower torso become bulged, consequently ‘hanging’ out of the location in which they are normally enclosed. These contained matters, consisting of an intestinal and abdominal mass, are encased within a thin membrane that lines the internal structure of any cavity within the body.

Hernias can potentially cause fatality if the blood supply becomes cut-off due to strangulation; a serious occurrence whereby due to the bulge hanging out from the legion, large pressures are created, constricting the blood vessels inside. In some severe cases, this inevitably leads to the complete eradication of the supply of blood to the hernia tissues and surrounding areas. If the supply blood supply is halted at the opening of the hernia located on the abdominal wall, this is extremely dangerous and the patient will be in a state of emergency.

In most cases, a hernia will occur when the compartment which envelopes an organ receives increased pressure, weakening the boundary. This may happen for numerous reasons:

Genetic propensity – If your parents have suffered from a hernia, you may be more likely to suffer also.

Age – As you grow older, the likelihood of suffering from hernia increases.

Marfan syndrome – A genetic disorder of connective tissues.

Pregnancy – After pregnancy, the stomach muscles of the mother stretch, increasing the risk of tissue obtrusion.

Drastic weight loss – Dramatic weight loss can cause the development of hernias.

Whooping cough – Coughing raises the pressure in the abdomen, any illness which induces coughing heightens the risk of hernia formation.

Ascites – This term means the build-up of fluid in the abdomen, causing a possible hernia.

Benign prostatic hypertrophy – Enlargement of the prostate gland causes pressure build-up

Sports hernias – Common amongst athletes with hip mechanism disorders

Excessive lifting – Forces abnormal strain on the stomach muscles

Approximately 10% of the population will suffer from an abdominal hernia for a period of their life. Hernias can occur at any point in life in males and females, although they predominately occur in the stomachs of older males.

Inguinal hernia repair is invasive surgery which repairs any formation of hernias in the abdominal wall of the groin area. Through a successful repair, all bulging tissue is pressed back into position. The abdominal wall of the patient is then enforced with stitches and in some instances, mesh. It is common knowledge that most patients who opt for hernia removal are able to be discharged on the same day of their operation.