Inguinal Hernia (Direct, Indirect & Femoral) Repair Surgery in NYC

Dr. Mark Reiner is an internationally recognized leader in treating and repairing inguinal (groin) hernias, including direct, indirect, and femoral hernias. If you’re experiencing pain, weakness, or pressure in the groin area, schedule a consultation with Dr. Reiner in NYC to receive expert diagnosis and treatment. Dr. Reiner has successfully performed thousands of minimally invasive inguinal hernia repairs and can help you return to a pain-free life.

What is an inguinal hernia?

An inguinal hernia, or an inner groin hernia, is a small protrusion of the intestine or other tissue that pushes through a weak part of the abdominal muscles. It may be congenital in nature or acquired. The congenital form is the most common, seen in neonates, children, and males under the age of 50. The acquired type is most often seen in the over-50 age group, though a combination of both types may be found in any adult male. A femoral hernia is a defect around the femoral vessels and is most commonly seen in females. A sports hernia is a groin defect present in professional athletes and competitive amateurs and may involve various tendons and muscle groups in the groin.

The condition can cause pain, especially when you cough, bend down, or lift large objects. While inguinal hernias are usually not serious, they can cause life-threatening complications if they become incarcerated (cannot be reduced or pushed in). Hernias do not go away on their own, and most doctors recommend surgical repair of inguinal hernias from a qualified hernia surgeon.

What are the different types of inguinal hernias?

There are three main types of inguinal hernias.

Direct Inguinal Hernia

A direct inguinal hernia occurs as the result of a weakness in the inguinal canal floor, allowing tissues to push through this defect. This type of hernia is more likely to occur in older men.

Indirect Inguinal Hernia

An indirect inguinal hernia is the result of a congenital defect or weakness at the internal inguinal ring. This type of hernia can occur in children, young adults, men or women.

Femoral Inguinal Hernia

A femoral hernia occurs when tissues bulge through the lower abdomen and into the upper inner thigh, around the major vessels that supply the leg. This type of hernia occurs more often in women than men.

What causes an inguinal hernia?

Sometimes, an inguinal hernia may appear with no obvious cause, while other times your doctor is able to pinpoint an exact reason for the hernia. Some of the potential causes for an inguinal hernia include:

  • Pregnancy
  • Straining during bowel movements
  • Lifting heavy objects
  • A weak abdominal wall
  • Chronic coughing
  • Increased abdominal pressure
  • Congenital weakness

What are the symptoms of an inguinal hernia?

The following signs and symptoms of an inguinal hernia may warrant a trip to visit a board certified hernia surgeon, such as Dr. Mark Reiner:

  • Groin pain or discomfort (especially when you cough, bend over, or lift heaving objects)
  • Pressure in the groin area
  • Weakness in groin area
  • A bulge or lump near the pubic bone
  • Aching or burning sensation in the groin, or upper inner thigh

Sometimes, an inguinal hernia escalates to become an incarcerated or strangulated hernia, which can be life-threatening. If you notice any of the below symptoms of a strangulated hernia in addition to the above symptoms, it is important to seek medical help right away:

  • Nausea / vomiting
  • Sudden, intense groin pain
  • Inability to pass bowels
  • Pelvic bulge that looks red or darkened

What are the risk factors for an inguinal hernia?

While a hernia can develop in anyone, you may have an increased risk of developing an inguinal hernia if you:

  • Are male
  • Are older in age
  • Are pregnant
  • Have had a prior inguinal hernia repair
  • Have a family history of hernias
  • Have a chronic cough (possibly from smoking)
  • Were premature or had a low birth weight

How is an inguinal hernia diagnosed?

Generally, an inguinal hernia can be diagnosed by a doctor during a physical exam. Your doctor will look for a bulge/lump in the groin area and may ask you to stand, cough, or bend down during the examination to check for discomfort. In some cases, it may be necessary for your doctor to use an ultrasound, MRI or CT scan to help determine whether a hernia is present, though this isn’t usually needed.

How is an inguinal hernia treated?

If your doctor suspects a hernia, you will likely be referred to an inguinal hernia treatment specialist, such as Dr. Mark Reiner. Sometimes, an inguinal hernia can be managed with conservative options if the condition is not life-threatening, although the condition will not go away on its own. In these cases, a doctor will monitor the hernia over time to ensure that the condition does not worsen.

Often, your doctor will recommend an elective hernia repair using a minimally invasive inguinal hernia surgery — especially if you experience discomfort, pain, or a growing bulge. Emergency surgical intervention, which can often be done laparoscopically in experienced hands, if the hernia cannot be reduced or pushed in or the bowel is compromised. The following advanced groin hernia surgery options performed by Dr. Mark Reiner can remedy an inguinal hernia and prevent any life-threatening consequences of an untreated hernia:

Watch Dr. Reiner’s Video Explaining Inguinal Hernia Repair

If you are suffering from an inguinal hernia, the first step to improving your health and getting back to your regular pain-free life is to schedule a consultation with an experienced hernia doctor. Dr. Mark Reiner is a top surgeon in the field of minimally invasive hernia repair, and has performed thousands of successful hernia operations. Contact Dr. Reiner today by calling 212.879.6677 or filling out the form on this page.

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