Indirect inguinal hernia are very common, and observed in both men and women. Let us have a look at indirect inguinal hernia information by going through the health article below.
Inguinal hernias are common hernias wherein the abdominal cavity contents protrude through the inguinal canal leading to hernias. There are two types of inguinal hernias, the direct inguinal hernia and the indirect inguinal hernia.
What is Indirect Inguinal Hernia?
Indirect inguinal hernias are mostly considered to be congenital in nature. They are called ‘indirect’ as the peritoneum and the bowel does not protrude through the weakness in the abdominal wall directly. Thus, it generally occurs as a congenital defect. The peritoneum functions as a coat on the testicle in a fetus. This occurs when the testicles are passing through the inguinal ring. This forms a temporary connection that is called the processus vaginalis. The bowel and peritoneum instead of entering the abdominal wall, move through the patent processus vaginalis and the scrotum.
During a normal fetal development, the processus is reduced to nothingness and ceases to exist, once the testicles completely descend into the scrotum. The inguinal ring is the only structure that remains open. If this opening is larger than it should be, it leads to indirect inguinal hernia. The abdominal contents enter the inguinal ring and reach the inguinal canal. This hernia is only seen in 4% women and is more commonly observed in men. In women, indirect inguinal hernia occurs when a section of the small intestine enters the labia major. This causes one side of the vagina to appear larger than the other. These hernias usually develop in weak, underdeveloped babies or premature babies. One can gently massage back the inguinal hernia into the abdominal cavity most of the time.
The indirect inguinal hernia symptoms that are generally observed as follows:
- Swelling in groin
- Sudden pain in the scrotum
- Abdominal discomfort
- Pain in groin while standing or walking
- Strange sensation in the groin
Mostly, indirect inguinal hernias are treated by simply pushing the swelling into the abdominal cavity. The patient does not require any kind of surgery or medication. The doctor may suggest wearing a supportive garment called truss. The truss helps in holding the hernia in place. When the hernia cannot be pushed back, the patient requires surgical treatment. There are two types of surgical treatments. These include the open hernia surgery and laproscopical surgery.
The open surgery is the most common type of inguinal hernia treatment. 95% of the cases involve open surgery. Here, the patient is given anesthesia, and the doctor makes a 4 to 6 inch slit in the groin. Then, the hernia tissue is pushed into its original place. Once the hernia is in place, the incision is stitched back. The recovery time for open surgery for hernia is about 6 weeks. Laparoscopic surgery is carried out under general anesthesia. The doctor makes three small incisions in the abdomen and a thin tube called laparoscope is inserted. This tube is fitted with light and camera that helps the surgeon observe within the body, on a monitor. The surgeon will push back the hernia in place and staple the incisions once done. The laparoscopic inguinal hernia surgery recovery time is about a week.
Indirect inguinal hernia is very common in infants. In case of adults, people who are overweight, lift heavy objects, suffer from severe constipation, or in case of women in labor, can develop inguinal hernia. You should speak to your doctor regarding the type of hernia you have developed, its treatment methods and risk factors involved.