What’s a hernia?

Find out more about this common medical condition.

Hernia

A hernia occurs when tissue pushes through an opening in your abdomen (ventral hernia) or groin area (inguinal hernia). A hernia can only be repaired with surgery.1

References

  1. "Hernia: Types, Symptoms, Causes, & More | Cleveland Clinic." Cleveland Clinic. N.p., 2017. Web. 18 July 2017.

What are some
of the symptoms
of a hernia?1

  • Pain in your abdomen when you cough, bend or twist, or when you lift something
  • A bulge or lump in your abdomen or groin
  • Heaviness, weakness, or dull pain in your groin or your abdomen

References

  1. "Hernia: Types, Symptoms, Causes, & More | Cleveland Clinic." Cleveland Clinic. N.p., 2017. Web. 18 July 2017.

The following
symptoms may
be more serious.1

You may want to seek emergency medical care if you experience any of these symptoms.

  • Sudden pain that quickly gets worse
  • Hernia bulge turns red, purple or dark
  • Nausea, vomiting or both
  • Fever
  • Inability to move your bowels or pass gas

References

  1. "Hernia: Types, Symptoms, Causes, & More | Cleveland Clinic." Cleveland Clinic. N.p., 2017. Web. 18 July 2017.

How are hernias
commonly
diagnosed?1

  • Physical exam
  • Ultrasound
  • CT scan
  • MRI
  • Physical exam
  • Ultrasound
  • CT scan
  • MRI

References

  1. "Hernia: Types, Symptoms, Causes, & More | Cleveland Clinic." Cleveland Clinic. N.p., 2017. Web. 18 July 2017.

Often, the physical exam by your doctor is all that’s needed to diagnose a hernia.

You’ll be asked to stand and cough or strain since those actions can make a hernia more prominent. The doctor will check for a bulge in your abdomen or groin.

In the rare case that the diagnosis isn’t apparent with a physical exam, your doctor or surgeon may order an imaging test, such as an ultrasound, CT scan or MRI, to make a conclusive hernia diagnosis.

References

  1. "Hernia: Types, Symptoms, Causes, & More | Cleveland Clinic." Cleveland Clinic. N.p., 2017. Web. 18 July 2017.

What causes
a hernia?1

Any of these risk factors might lead to a hernia.

  • Frequent heavy lifting
  • Prior hernia or abdominal surgery
  • Pregnancy
  • Chronic cough
  • Bowel injury

References

  1. "Hernia: Types, Symptoms, Causes, & More | Cleveland Clinic." Cleveland Clinic. N.p., 2017. Web. 18 July 2017.

References

  1. "Hernia: Types, Symptoms, Causes, & More | Cleveland Clinic." Cleveland Clinic. N.p., 2017. Web. 18 July 2017.

Site sponsored by Intuitive Surgical. Note: If you are experiencing sudden, intense pain in your abdomen or groin that you suspect may be a hernia, contact your doctor immediately or visit the Emergency Room. Unless otherwise noted, all people depicted are models.
PN 1035520 Rev A 8/2017