Groin and abdominal hernia are very common illnesses.1 in 100 people have groin or abdominal wall hernia. However, unless the hernia grows or aches, doctors are not visited and it might even be unnoticed.
Types of Hernia
Groin is the weakest area of the abdominal region because the cross muscle tissue does not cover the whole area in groin region. In males, vas deferens (channel from testes to the penis) also passes through this region, so groin hernia is more common among men than women. Also in male children, a problem in testes’ descent to scrotum may cause groin hernia at birth. Groin hernias are classified as direct, indirect, femoral, and compound hernia. It is reported that during a lifespan, groin hernia occurs in 10% of males and 3% of females. Groin hernia operation is the most common surgical operation in the world.
This type of hernia forms around the belly button (umbilical area), which is also one of the weakest areas in human abdomen. In the womb, babies are connected to the placenta with an umbilical cord through the belly button, and after birth in some cases, this connection may not entirely be blocked, leaving the abdominal umbilical muscle tissue not entirely covering the abdomen. Sometimes, pregnant women may experience umbilical hernia due to the weakening of the abdominal wall as inside pressure increases with a baby growing inside. Pregnancy umbilical hernias are mostly small and not harmful; although may become dangerous if internal organs or fat tissue gets trapped in the hernia sac.
Though all hernia of front abdominal wall are named epigastric hernia, practically all hernia in abdominal wall except from groin and umbilical hernia, especially above umbilical midline area hernias are called epigastric hernia.
Incision Site (Incisional) Hernia
One of the most common types of hernia. In abdominal surgical operations, abdominal wall is opened and likewise closed with surgery. However, incision healing is not always perfect. Other risk factors, especially obesity, old age, smoking, eating disorders and cancer can significantly delay the healing process. The probability of acquiring incisional hernia is around 20% after going through an abdominal surgical operation.
Also a type of incisional hernia, flank hernia is mostly seen after kidney operations. Though rare, some people can develop flank hernia in natural anatomical weak spots such as Grynfeldt and Petit Triangles.
After ostomy (pulling out a portion of small intestine or colon), a type of incisional hernia, called parastomal hernia can develop in the ostomy site. In fact almost a third of the ostomy patients develop parastomal hernia. More rarely, Spiegel and obturator hernia can develop from other anatomically weak regions of the abdominal area.
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