Does a Hernia Always Require Surgery?

Does a Hernia Always Require Surgery?

What should you do if you get a hernia? Most of the time, you’ll need to get it repaired surgically. While there are rare exceptions, in general, hernias rarely heal on their own. If they’re not treated, they’ll typically become larger and increase your risk of developing complications.

Maria Palafox, MD, and her team are experts in surgically repairing hernias. If you have one or ever get one, Dr. Palafox can use laparoscopic surgical techniques to make your surgery as minimally invasive as possible, so you’ll have less scarring and less downtime.

Defining a hernia

A hernia describes the protrusion of an organ through a weak spot or opening in tissue that contains it. The most common organ this happens to is the intestine, and the containing tissue is the abdominal wall. This is called an inguinal hernia.

An inguinal hernia can occur for no other reason than a failure of the abdominal wall, or it can result from a strain or strenuous activity. An inguinal hernia usually shows as a bulge on either side of your pubic bone, and it will often be more pronounced when you’re standing.

Inguinal hernias happen much more in men, particularly as they get older, though these can be a side effect of pregnancy as well. Infants and children may also experience inguinal hernias if the abdominal wall isn’t fully developed.

When hernia surgery can be delayed

If you have a small hernia that causes few symptoms, you may not need surgery right away, but you will need to have your doctor monitor it regularly. If the tissue that protrudes can be easily pushed back into place, or if the protrusion disappears when you lie down, you may not need an immediate surgery in these cases either. However, these decisions should be made by a qualified medical professional.

When hernia surgery is necessary

When a hernia starts to get larger, or when it causes pain on a regular basis, it may be time to meet with Dr. Palafox and schedule surgery. This can become even more urgent if you develop complications, such as:


This occurs when tissue, which is usually intestinal, gets caught in the abdominal wall at the site of the hernia. If this is left untreated, strangulation can occur.


When tissue is pinched by the hernia, this can impede blood flow to the tissue. This is called strangulation. If the tissue stays pinched, it can die due to a lack of nutrients. This can lead to an infection and even death in some cases. Once strangulation begins, you may need emergency surgery. You’ll likely experience fever, nausea, and severe pain, and the area around your hernia may turn red or purple.

If you need hernia surgery, book an appointment online or over the phone with Maria Palafox, MD today. Dr. Palafox and her team will take the utmost care to make sure your surgery is as minimally invasive as possible.

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