Inguinal hernia is a common type of hernia that occurs in the groin area. The disorder typically produces mild, nonspecific symptoms that can be misleading when diagnosed correctly. Most people with inguinal hernias may actually have no symptoms, making diagnosis of the disorder even more difficult. The only reliable means of diagnosing inguinal hernias are MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), X-rays, computed tomography and laparoscopy. Due to the fact that hernia usually progresses latently, most people are diagnosed with the disorder long after they develop complications that require immediate surgery. However, if the disorder is discovered in time, patients have the option of deciding whether to repair their hernia surgically or not.
Inguinal hernia is not only difficult to diagnose, but also poses many postoperative problems. Although surgery for this type of hernia is a straightforward procedure with minimal risk, it cannot always prevent the disorder from recurring. In fact, the majority of patients undergoing hernia repair surgery have a worsening of the disorder over time. In view of the fact that the hernia has a pronounced postoperative recurrence character, many doctors recommend patients to postpone the operation until it is absolutely necessary.
The exact reasons why hernia recurs in patients who have had surgery are unknown. However, the rate of postoperative recurrence of inguinal hernias in patients is very high. Medical scientists have conducted various experiments to determine whether surgery is indicated or not in patients with uncomplicated hernias. A recent study shows that patients who choose to delay surgery typically have the same symptoms as those who have surgery.
Another recent experience suggests that patients who have had surgery are more likely to experience more intense symptoms than those who choose not to have their inguinal hernia surgically repaired. Therefore, doctors recommend surgery only for patients with complicated inguinal hernias, which suggests that surgery is not the best option in treating the condition. In fact, most health professionals consider surgery to be a last resort in treating inguinal hernias.
Despite the fact that the occurrence of a hernia cannot be effectively avoided, most people who have been diagnosed with the disorder can prevent the development of complications. If the disorder is discovered in time, the best option for patients is likely to be to keep the hernia under control and to delay the operation as long as possible. People suffering from mild and uncomplicated forms of inguinal hernia are advised to avoid strenuous physical exertion and to reduce stress in order to avoid further aggravation of the disorder. Patients with a hernia should regularly see their doctor for a physical exam. If patients with mild hernia take special measures to prevent the development of complications, they can delay the operation by several years.