Hernia symptoms vary according to the structure and cause involved. A lot of hernia cases start as small and unnoticeable breakthroughs. It may occur as soft lumps found under the skin at first. Usually, this stage does not involve any pain. However, there will be gradual increase of the pressure in the internal content against the weak wall and the lump size increases. Other symptoms of hernia include:
Pain- Hernia comes with pain due to some reasons that include stretch of the tissue around and at the hole. This is also likely to occur due to damage and irritation to nerves in the area as a result of the pinch and push of hernia nerves.
Bulge- This becomes evident when abdominal cavity contents are pushed through the hole or the hernia defect. This location of the bulge will vary based on the location of the defect or hole and the hernia type.
Localize pain– This kind of pain is often the result of tearing and stretching of the abdominal wall tissues like the tendon and the area muscle. When the bulge increases, the pain is also expected to get more intense.
Generalized pain– Due to the incarceration or entrapment of hernia contents, the blood supply of the intestine is likely to shut off or be compromised. The tissue contained in a hernia will then be strangulated causing the tissue to die and cause additional pain that will become generalized pain throughout the abdomen. The pain is expected to be unremitting and severe.
Hernia causes discomfort and pain as well as lessens general mobility. It is not a type of disorder that does not heal by itself despite curability of other forms using external manipulation. A hernia is likely to cause complications that are risky depending on the structural solidity through which it is protruding and the nature of the protruding organ.
There are different types of hernia’s as follows:
Abdominal wall hernia– This type of hernia is also called a ventral or epigastric hernia. This is not a very common type of hernia. This type also includes umbilical and inguinal hernias.
Direct inguinal hernia– This type of hernia can affect both men and women. The intestinal loop makes a swelling in the inside part of the groin’s fold.
Indirect inguinal hernia– This type is possible in men only. An intestinal loop passes through the canal from where a testis goes down the scrotum during childhood years. If this hernia is ignored, it may increase in size progressively and cause the scrotum to expand.
Umbilical hernia– Both men and women can be affected by this type of hernia. A loop in the intestine protrudes through a weak abdominal wall at the navel.
Although some abdominal hernias may occur since birth, other types of hernias are developed at a later stage in life. There are those that include pathways created during fetal development, existing abdominal cavity opening and abdominal-wall weakness areas. A hernia can form and become worse by any condition that may increase abdominal cavity pressure. Some of these conditions include:
- Heavy lifting
- Chronic lung disease
- Straining during urination or bowel movement
- Abdominal cavity fluid
It’s likely that hernias are painful and definitely affect the quality of life. Because of this, it is necessary to visit a physician immediately once you can feel the potential presence of a hernia in the groin and abdominal area. The doctor will use various ways to identify if there is a need for hernia diagnosis so they can continue with an efficient and effective treatment course.
In various cases, hernia diagnosis is needed based on simple physical examination. While considering the type and size of protrusion, the physician may diagnose the condition by pressing gently on the affected area. However, when a hernia is not simple enough to be identified by a physical examination, the physician may use other methods to identify the order of hernia diagnosis. These methods may include ordering a computerized tomography (CT) scan and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
Together with these tests, a diagnostic laparoscopy can also be considered by the physician before finally settling on a diagnosis. This test is a minimally invasive procedure that uses general anesthesia. The abdominal cavity will be directly placed with a scope enabling the physician to perform an examination of the abdominal walls. Typically, this method is only used when there are no conclusive results provided by other procedures of assessing the potential presence of a hernia. Moreover, ultrasound can be utilized to detect a femoral hernia and abdominal X-rays can be ordered by the physician to identify the presence of a bowel obstruction.
When the physician has diagnosed a hernia presence, it is likely to start administering the right treatment for the disorder which will vary according to age, size and location of the hernia and the level of discomfort.