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Healing for Your Hernia

Healing for Your Hernia

A hernia can develop when abdominal stress tears a hole in your muscle wall. Your internal organs, such as the intestines, may push through the hole and create a visible lump under your skin in your abdomen or groin area.

Anyone can get a hernia, and there are more than six different types. About 60% of people experience hiatal hernias by the time they’re 60 years old, while about 27% of all men get inguinal hernias.

Hernias vary in location and severity, but one thing is always true: Hernias don’t heal on their own. So you should never put off medical care if you think you have a hernia. 

Elvira Klause, MD, FACS, and our team in San Clemente, California, can help you find the best course of treatment to heal your hernia and reduce your risk of complications.

Identifying a hernia

Hernias often form due to weak spots in your muscle tissue. They’re most commonly found in the abdomen and groin, and the most obvious symptom is a visible bulge under your skin.

Hernias can happen to anyone, regardless of age or gender. But certain factors may increase your risk of developing one. Some of the most common causes of hernias are:

Any of these causes can force your abdominal organs through a weak spot in your muscle wall, creating a hernia.

The hernia bulge may vary in size, depending on the type of hernia you have. Hernia bulges are usually soft, and you may be able to push it back into your body quite easily. You might notice that your hernia disappears when you lie down.

While a visible bulge is often the only symptom of a hernia, it can also cause pain. Pain is more common with larger hernias and those that have continued to get worse over time. You might experience a heavy sensation in the affected area, and pain may worsen with strenuous activity.

Your hernia treatment options

Once you have a hernia, it won’t heal on its own. Small hernias may not need immediate repair, but you shouldn’t try to diagnose your condition alone. As a hernia repair specialist, Dr. Klause is experienced in identifying hernias and recommending appropriate treatment plans.

Watchful waiting

If you have a small hernia that isn’t causing pain, Dr. Klause may recommend watchful waiting at first. Regular exams and lifestyle changes (such as losing extra weight) can be enough to avoid hernia complications.

She tracks changes in your hernia and your health, adjusting your treatment plan as needed. If your hernia gets worse, you could benefit from hernia repair.

Laparoscopic hernia repair

If you need hernia repair, Dr. Klause recommends laparoscopic surgery whenever possible. Laparoscopic hernia repair is minimally invasive, so there are fewer risks associated with surgery, and you can enjoy a faster recovery.

Dr. Klause makes a small incision in your abdomen and inserts a small camera to assess your hernia. Then she uses small tools to repair your hernia and place a layer of mesh over the damaged muscle. The mesh helps your body heal more fully, so your risk of suffering another hernia is reduced.

Most minimally invasive hernia repair surgeries take about 30 minutes. In most cases, our patients can go home the same day. Plan to recover at home for about a week, and return to our office for a follow-up appointment in 7-10 days. 

Could you have a hernia? Schedule an appointment with Dr. Klause to get a diagnosis and treatment plan that fits your needs. Call our office at 949-393-2595 or request an appointment online to get started.

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