Laparoscopic hernia repair is a minimally invasive surgical procedure with a short recovery time. Let’s soak up the details of laparoscopic hernia surgery in the following health article.
Hernia is a health condition wherein the inner layers of the abdominal wall weaken and collapse causing the contents of the abdominal cavities to bulge. This causes the abdominal inner lining forms a balloon like sac. This leads to formation of a loop of the abdominal tissues or intestine to enter the sac. This is called hernia.
Hernia can lead to mild to severe pain and many serious health complications. The common sites of developing hernias are the groin (inguinal and femoral hernia) area, umbilical (belly button) area, areas where a surgical abdominal incision (incisional hernia) was made and epigastric hernia (upper abdomen). Hernias can be either congenital or acquired. Men and women both suffer from hernias, but hernias are more commonly observed in men. There are two types of surgeries that help in treatment of hernia, open surgery and laparoscopic hernia repair.
When hernias are left untreated, they tend to become larger with time. It begins to protrude from the hole or defect in the abdominal wall and causes deformity of the overlying skin. In some cases, it does not cause any pain, however, some people often complain of severe pain in hernia after a strenuous activity. Few other situations that may result in a hernia are caused by surgical incisions (where the original tissue does not heal), pregnancy, excessive weight gain, ascites (fluid retention in belly), lifting a heavy object, chronic cough, enlarged prostate in men leading to difficulty in urination as well as severe constipation.
Surgery is the only way to fix a hernia with the exception being that umbilical hernia in infants and children can be treated by gently massaging the hernia back to its original place. In order to prevent bowel incarceration and bowel strangulation, one needs to carry out a surgery. This HealthHearty article will concentrate more on the laparoscopic hernia surgery procedure and help you understand this surgical option better.
Laparoscopic Surgery Procedure for Hernia Repair
Laparoscopic surgery is a minimally invasive surgery. In this procedure, the surgeon makes 3 small incisions of ½ inch or less on the belly. Through these 3 holes, the instruments and laparoscope is inserted into the body. A laparoscope is a thin tube that is connected to a camera and bright light source. This camera is connected to a monitor on which the surgeon observes the hernia. The surgery is usually performed under general anesthesia.
The abdomen is filled with carbon dioxide that helps inflate the belly. Then the peritoneum is cut and the weak abdominal wall is exposed. A wire mesh is inserted and attached to the weak abdominal wall. Then, the peritoneum is sutured or stapled. One or two stitches are given to the abdominal incisions. There are two different laparoscopic hernia surgery techniques used. They are as follows:
Transabdominal Preperitoneal Approach (TAPP)
In this procedure, the surgeon enters the site of the organs located in the abdominal cavity and dissects the hernia. He then places a plastic mesh over the hernia defect and covers it using the lining of the abdominal cavity.
Totally Extraperitoneal Approach (TEP)
This is a procedure where the surgeon avoids operating inside the abdominal cavity. The surgery is performed outside the abdominal cavity above the abdominal lining. The hernia defect is repaired using a plastic mesh.
Benefits of Laparoscopic Surgery for Hernia Repair
There are many benefits of choosing laparoscopic surgery for treating hernia. They are as follows:
- Three tiny scars, on the abdomen that remain behind after surgery, disappear with time.
- One needs to be hospitalized only for a day or two after the surgery.
- There is a reduction in postoperative pain.
- One can return to work sooner and resume their daily activities within a few days.
- The recovery time is short.
- Rate of infection is minimal.
- Recurrence rate of hernia is low.
- The hospital bills are affordable.
Laparoscopic Hernia Recovery Time
The recovery time for laparoscopic hernia surgery is less than open hernia surgery. The patient is allowed to go home the same day or after a maximum of 2 days following surgery, depending on the patient’s health. The hernia surgery recovery period is just 1 to 2 weeks after a laparoscopic procedure. If the surgery was performed without the use of plastic or wire mesh, the recovery period may take up to 6 weeks.
The laparoscopic hernia repair cost may fall in the average range of $4,000 to $10,000. The cost of hernia surgery depends on your geographical location, type of hospital you visit as well as the surgical equipment and mesh used for your surgery. You should visit only an experienced surgeon for minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery. Make sure you discuss all the risks, side effects and the after care required for a laparoscopic surgery. For more information, your doctor is the best person to approach if you want more particulars related to hernia and its surgery procedures.