Every individual can get affected by a hernia regardless of age and gender. Hernia can’t go away on its own and you should undergo a surgical procedure called hernia repair surgery to get treated and cured. In case you delay or avoid the hernia repair surgery, you can suffer from serious health problems and life-threatening complications that can affect your overall well being. Depending on the severity of symptoms that are affecting your daily activities, your doctor will recommend hernia repair surgery.
Types of Hernia Repair Surgery:
To treat and prevent the hernia, your doctor can suggest open hernia repair surgery and laparoscopic hernia repair surgery. If you have small hernias without any symptoms, your doctor can recommend watchful waiting [waiting for symptoms to occur].
Most of the surgeons or doctors recommend laparoscopic hernia surgery for their patients as it has advantages like quick recovery, involves fewer cuts, decreased risk of infection, safe and shorter stay in the hospital.
Open hernia repair surgery involves making a single large incision over the abdomen. Then your surgeon will locate the weak spot of the abdominal wall and place a mesh over it to strengthen it. By doing so, your abdominal wall can hold the organs from displacing.
During laparoscopic hernia repair surgery, your surgeon makes a few small incisions which are called ports. A laparoscope is inserted through one of the ports to visualize the internal organs. After locating the hernia, advanced and latest surgical instruments can be used to treat the hernia by placing a synthetic mesh over the weak spot of the abdominal wall. This mesh provides strength to the abdominal wall and helps in holding internal organs in their original position.
Precautions you need to take after Hernia surgery:
After completion of hernia surgery, you will be shifted to the recovery room. While you are in the recovery room, all your vitals will be monitored by the doctors and nurses to make sure your overall health is in good condition. Once you are worn out from anesthesia, you will be discharged from the hospital. Before getting out of the hospital, your doctor may provide a few precautions which help you in improving the healing process of your surgical wounds and to recover quickly from the surgery.
- Take sufficient rest: After completion of hernia surgery, you can be recommended by your doctor to take sufficient rest until you feel better. Taking rest helps your body to recover and promotes a faster healing process.
- Avoid using machinery or power tools: Your doctor advises you not to use any machinery or power tools under the effect of anesthesia. Because, in a few cases, you can be under the effect of anesthesia even after discharge from the hospital for a few hours. Bringing a family member or a friend along with you to the hospital is recommended.
- No alcohol and smoking: You should not smoke or drink alcohol for at least two  to three  weeks after the surgery as they can impair your healing process by reducing the supply of oxygen to the blood vessels of the wound.
- Don’t drive when you take medications: If you are on opioid pain medications, it is best to avoid driving as they can impair cause dizziness.
- Don’t lift heavy weights: You should not lift heavy objects or weights unless your doctor says it is ok to do. If you keep on lifting heavy weights daily, surgical wounds cannot heal as expected and can lead to serious health concerns.
- Use medications as directed by the doctor: To reduce severe pain after the surgery, your doctor can prescribe a few pain-killers that help in reducing the pain. However, you should not overuse them and should take them only as directed by your doctor. Laxatives can be prescribed by your doctor in case you suffer from difficult bowel movements.
- Daily exercises: Your doctor can advise you to perform simple and easy daily exercises for about 20-30 minutes. By doing so, you can improve the healing process and can boost your recovery time which helps you to get back to your normal routines before the expected date.
- Eat fiber-rich foods: Eating high fiber foods like sweet potatoes, cauliflower, carrots, watermelons, brown rice, cabbage, oats, and strawberries helps in reducing the occurrence of constipation and reduces the pain during bowel movements.
- Incisional care: Keep away your wound from getting wet for the next 48 hours after the surgery. You should avoid pulling the strips of tape that are used to close the incisions. You should not rub the wound and instead pat the skin dry.
Apart from the above-mentioned precautions, there are a few more suggestions which need to be followed by you and are:
- Do not stress while urinating or during defecation as it can increase the pressure in your abdominal area which leads to recurrence of hernia even after the surgery.
- Avoid going swimming for at least a week or two.
- Drink 6-8 glasses of water to avoid dehydration. Drinking water can also help in softening your stools and reduces constipation.
When to Consult the Doctor:
If you start noticing any of the below-mentioned signs and symptoms within a week or two after the surgery, you should immediately contact your doctor and seek medical attention.
- Difficulty in urination
- Chest pain
- Severe abdominal pain
- High fever
- Discharge of pus from the surgical site
- Tingling in arms and legs
After undergoing any type of hernia repair surgery, you have to follow all the precautions and preventive measures suggested by your doctor as they can help you to recover quickly by improving your overall health condition. In a few cases, you can suffer from a recurrence of the hernia, and in such cases, you should contact your doctor immediately for surgical intervention.
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