A hernia is a medical condition that occurs in the abdomen or groin area when there is a weak spot in the muscular wall. This condition in hernia causes the organ or tissue to protrude through the opening in the surrounding muscle or connective tissue, causing a localized bulge. Thus, it can create pain and discomfort for the person and requires timely medical attention.
There are different types of hernia, and not all are life-threatening conditions. Yet, seeking medical help is the first thing to do for preventing complications. In several cases, surgery becomes necessary.
Causes of Hernia
A hernia occurs due to a strain in weak muscles. In some cases, the condition may take some time to develop, whereas, in some, it can appear in a short period. The weakening of muscles can happen owing to several factors. Some of the causes and risk factors include:
- Lifting heavy objects
- Family medical history of a hernia
- Chronic coughs like in case of smoking, or persistent sneezing
- Conditions like obesity, diarrhoea, and constipation
- Strenuous activities
- Poor nutrition
Also, pregnancy is a risk factor that causes hernia in women as the growing belly causes increased pressure and weakening of muscles of the stomach wall, thus causing hernia.
Symptoms of Hernia
A person may experience the following symptoms of hernia:
- Pain in the affected area
- Swelling beneath the skin of the abdomen or groin
- Weakness or pressure in the abdomen
- Gurgling, heartburn, and problem swallowing
- Aching or burning sensation near the abdomen
- Vomiting or nausea
Women are likely to get femoral hernia than men; it is a condition that occurs around upper thigh. For women with hernia, it may be difficult to diagnose the problem sometimes. Hence, one should be careful and look for tell-tale signs such as groin pain or pelvic pain.
Hernia Diagnosis and Treatment
A physical examination will help in identifying a hernia. The bulge usually would seem prominent and larger when the patient stands or experiences any strain. Sometimes, medical tests such as a CT scan, MRI scan, ultrasound, and endoscopy will be required. A doctor may recommend medication to help the patient get relief from the symptoms. The treatment of a hernia also includes a laparoscopic surgery or open procedure known as Herniorrhaphy when the condition becomes severe.
Ignoring a hernia or delaying its treatment is not a good idea as the condition may worsen and lead to complications. Hence, knowing the early signs is the key to a healthier life.
How to Prevent Hernia?
Prevention of hernia is possible through some lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking, maintaining ideal body weight, eating healthy, and avoiding strenuous activities or lifting heavy objects. Being aware of the risk factors, as discussed in this article, will help you decide on the right precautionary measures. A hernia will not heal by itself, and therefore it is essential to get proper medical care without any delay. If you notice any of the symptoms or face a risk, it is advisable to consult a doctor.
Timely medical procedures are the need of the hour that will help you walk the road to recovery faster. Medical expenses can be a cause of worry, which is why you should consider opting for a health insurance plan. For the treatment of hernia, there is a specific waiting period of 24 months. The policyholder will be eligible to get coverage after completion of this period. At the time of buying a policy, remember to read the policy documents.
Choose ‘Care,’ which is a comprehensive health insurance cover by Care Health Insurance (formerly Religare Health Insurance). The benefits you can avail of include the cashless treatment facility at over 7900 network hospitals in India, annual health check-ups, no claim bonus, and more. Visit the official website for more details.