An inguinal hernia is a hernia located in the groin and protruding above the inguinal ligament. It presents as a bulge in the area. In men, the hernia can descend into the testicle and, in women, into the labia majora, and be accompanied by pain.
An inguinal hernia can be direct or indirect, depending on its anatomical location, but the management remains the same. The diagnosis is usually based on physical examination. More rarely, it requires an ultrasound or a CT scan.
Surgical treatment of inguinal hernia
The treatment of inguinal hernias is almost always surgical due to the risk of incarceration and strangulation of the intestine. The operation is most often performed in the outpatient clinic, by laparoscopy and under general anesthesia. In some cases, for example if the hernia is too large or in case of an incarceration, the intervention is carried out by laparotomy . An incision is made at the bottom of the abdomen, the hernia is put back into the abdomen and a mesh is added (Lichtenstein technique) to strengthen the abdominal wall and to prevent any recurrence.