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Hernia Repair (Femoral)

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Learn more about hernia repairs at King Edward VII’s Hospital

Why would I need this surgery?

If you have a femoral hernia and it’s causing you considerable pain or discomfort, or your surgeon thinks it could become worse, they will recommend that you have surgery.

What symptoms does this surgery address?

An femoral hernia occurs when a piece of fatty tissue or section of bowel pushes through a weakness in the muscle wall into your groin at the top of your inner thigh. It is a rare type of hernia; however it is most commonly seen in women, particularly older women, due to the shape of the pelvis.

It can be caused by straining on the toilet or carrying/pushing heave loads. It has also been linked to obesity and having a persistent cough.

If left untreated, it can cause considerable pain and discomfort, and could become serious if the bowel becomes obstructed or strangulated.

Surgery aims to repair the hernia to relieve the associated pain and discomfort.

When should you speak to your specialist about this surgery?

If you think you have a femoral hernia or you have pain, discomfort or a bulging in your groin or upper thigh area, speak to your specialist who can assess your symptoms and discuss surgery if necessary.

How is this surgery performed?

Primary repair of the femoral hernia is carried out under a general anaesthetic and takes around 30 to 45 minutes. Most patients are able to go home the same day as their surgery.

During open surgery, your surgeon will make a single cut in your lower stomach or over the hernia. This is around 3 to 4cm long. The femoral canal is opened and then the surgeon will push the herniated tissue or bowel back up into place. The canal is then closed and the cut sealed with stitches.

What is the recovery like for this surgery?

Your recovery from femoral hernia will depend on multiple factors, including your age, fitness level and the nature of your procedure.

After your procedure, your medical team will provide you with pain relief and advice on how long you should take off work and refrain from carrying out your normal activities. Avoid drinking alcohol and operating heavy machinery for 24 to 38 hours.

Most people are able to return to light exercise and activities within one-two weeks. Gentle exercise, such as walking, can aid your recovery although you should avoid heavy lifting and strenuous activity for around six weeks. Do not play sports like football and rugby until at least eight and 12 weeks respectively.

Are there any risks/complications associated with this surgery?

As with any medical procedure, it’s possible for risks or complications to arise. Speaking with your specialist or surgeon beforehand will help you avoid any adverse reactions.

This surgery has a relatively low risk of serious complications, but the following risks and complications can occur in a small number of cases:
• Swelling and bruising in the area
• A recurrence of the hernia
• Developing a lump under the wound
• Difficulty passing urine
• Injury to the femoral vein
• Injury to the bowel
• Injury to the nerves resulting in pain or numbness in area

How can I prepare for this surgery?

Prior to the surgery, your surgeon will discuss with you how best to prepare, as each patient is different.

Common preparations for primary repair of the femoral hernia include:
• Routine blood tests, x rays or scans as requested by your surgeon
• Taking steps to stop smoking if you smoke
• Losing weight if you’re overweight
• Remaining active and doing regular exercise

Are there alternatives to this surgery?

If it’s been recommended that you have primary repair of the femoral hernia, it’s unlikely that any other treatment will be effective in your case.

Call 020 7467 4344 or fill in your details below to make an enquiry
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