The term “her­nia” is a gener­ic med­ical word for any sit­u­a­tion in which an organ or oth­er struc­ture punc­tures through an open­ing in the mus­cle or tis­sue that usu­al­ly holds it in place. Intesti­nal her­nias are the most com­mon, where part of the gut pro­trudes through the stom­ach wall. 

Types Of Hernia

While there are lit­er­al­ly dozens of her­nias you can get, some are more com­mon than others.  An inguinal type is prob­a­bly the most com­mon. This occurs when part of the bow­el pierces through the mus­cles in the abdomen, cre­at­ing a lump on the sur­face. Usu­al­ly, they occur low­er down, rather than high­er up.  They are more com­mon in men due to anatom­i­cal rea­sons and are so-called because of the form around the inguinal canal – the route the tes­ti­cles take on their descent towards the scro­tum dur­ing puberty.  Hiatal her­nias are anoth­er com­mon type of her­nia. These occur when the stom­ach (not the intestines) push­es out through the diaphragm into the chest category. Peo­ple over the age of 50 com­mon­ly expe­ri­ence this type of her­nia. Some­times, it occurs because of birth defects, but more often because of lifestyle factors.  You might also have a ven­tral type. These occur when oth­er pieces of tis­sue bulge out through open­ings in the abdom­i­nal wall. Most are present from birth. 

Hernia Causes

As you might expect, there are many caus­es of her­nias. Usu­al­ly, they devel­op over a peri­od of time from an ini­tial weakness.  Some com­mon caus­es of strain or mus­cle weak­ness that can lead to her­nias include:

- Aging

Aging is a pri­ma­ry cause of her­nias. When they are young, mus­cle tis­sues can eas­i­ly accom­mo­date all of the body’s inter­nal organs. But as peo­ple get old­er, they can become increas­ing­ly less effec­tive at doing so. Even­tu­al­ly, patients reach the point where the mus­cle can no longer con­tain the tis­sues behind it, and they spill out. 

- Damage During Surgery

Accord­ing to Rosen­feld Injury Lawyers, her­nia is also a com­mon sur­gi­cal com­pli­ca­tion. Med­ical pro­fes­sion­als may, for instance, incor­rect­ly apply gauze or mesh, allow­ing inter­nal organs to spill out. 

- Being Overweight

Over­weight and obe­si­ty are both risk fac­tors. Increased abdom­i­nal pres­sure and ten­sion on the mus­cles them­selves forces them to work hard­er. If there is any weak­ness in the mus­cle wall, the tis­sue will spill through. 

- Constipation

Con­sti­pa­tion can also increase intra-abdom­i­nal pres­sure. This addi­tion­al force then push­es out on the sur­round­ing mus­cle, caus­ing sec­tions of the bow­el to push through.  If con­sti­pa­tion is the cause, you may notice that your her­nia some­times gets worse and some­times gets bet­ter. You can reduce your like­li­hood of devel­op­ing con­sti­pa­tion by eat­ing suf­fi­cient calo­ries for your weight and mak­ing sure that you get plen­ty of fiber in your diet. Most peo­ple should shoot for at least 40 grams per day. Get­ting this amount will keep your stools soft, allow­ing for easy transit. 

- Chronic Coughing

If you cough all the time, you are also at increased risk of her­nia. That’s because cough­ing tem­porar­i­ly increas­es the amount of pres­sure in your body. Peo­ple with COPD, for instance, are at a much high­er risk of devel­op­ing it dur­ing the course of the disease. 

- Congenital Condition

You may also have a her­nia because of a con­gen­i­tal con­di­tion. Some­times, the mus­cles in the stom­ach wall don’t com­plete­ly cov­er the abdom­i­nal cav­i­ty, open­ing up lat­er on in life. Her­nias typ­i­cal­ly become vis­i­ble in child­hood and often require surgery to correct. 

Risk Factors

There are also a series of known risk fac­tors that increase your like­li­hood of devel­op­ing her­nias include:

1- Cystic Fibrosis

Cys­tic fibro­sis itself does not cause her­nias. How­ev­er, they are a com­mon complication. 

2- Premature Birth

Peo­ple born pre­ma­ture­ly are also at a high­er risk of her­nia. Researchers believe that this may be because their abdomens do not have suf­fi­cient time to form before they exit the birth canal. 

Treatment Of Hernia

Your treat­ment options depend on the type of her­ni­a­tion you have and your over­all state of health. At first, your doc­tor may rec­om­mend mon­i­tor­ing your con­di­tion for changes. This may include mak­ing changes to your activ­i­ty, diet, and habits. Med­i­cines may help lessen her­nia symptoms. what is a hernia l types of hernia l causes of hernia If the symp­toms don’t improve or wors­en, your doc­tor will dis­cuss surgery. There are two types of sur­gi­cal treat­ment. Laparo­scop­ic surgery is less inva­sive. Your doc­tor or a sur­geon will make minor cuts in the affect­ed area to fix the her­nia. The oth­er type is Open repair surgery which requires a larg­er cut to have the repair done.

Living With a Hernia

While most types of her­nias can be treat­ed and cor­rect­ed, it’s com­mon for her­nias to come back. In some cas­es, a sur­gi­cal mesh can help reduce this chance of recur­rence. Talk to your sur­geon about the best treat­ment option for you and how to pre­vent recur­ring hernias.

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