Ventral hernias can sometimes occur spontaneously, but more often, they are due to surgical trauma, particularly following abdominal interventions. These hernias cannot heal on their own, and require reconstructive surgery from trained specialists. At Thrive Reconstructive Surgery, our surgeons have a long track record performing ventral hernia repair, restoring patients to full functionality and mobility. If you have experienced a ventral hernia, no matter the reason, we welcome you to contact our offices.
What Causes Ventral Hernias?
A ventral hernia is a protrusion of tissues through a spot of weakness in the abdominal wall muscles. They can occur for any number of reasons, including:
- As a result of chronic coughing or sneezing
- As a symptom of diabetes
- As an effect of injury or obesity
- As an effect of pregnancy
Additionally, ventral hernias are often caused by incisions made in order to perform abdominal surgery. At Thrive Reconstructive Surgery, we provide ventral hernia repair for patients who fall into any of these categories.
What are the Symptoms of a Ventral Hernia?
There are a number of symptoms that are commonly associated with ventral hernias, including:
- Constipation, or a “narrow” stool
- Pain in the abdomen, especially around the site of the protrusion
- Nausea, vomiting, and fever
- Rapid heart rate
- Lump or protrusion in your abdominal region
If you notice any of these symptoms, particularly if you have recently had a surgical procedure performed in your abdominal region, we recommend seeing a doctor. Contact Thrive Reconstructive Surgery to set up an initial diagnostic appointment.
Diagnosing a Ventral Hernia
In diagnosing a ventral hernia, one of the most telling indicators is the appearance of a lump in the abdomen. When you see a doctor about your ventral hernia, you will likely be asked to stand so that the physician can apply pressure to your abdomen, physically feeling for a lump or protrusion in order to confirm the diagnosis.
Additionally, you will be asked about other symptoms, and about any recent surgeries or injuries, you have experienced.
Meet Your Doctors
At Thrive Reconstructive Surgery, we are known for being problem solvers, tackling tough cases, and challenging pathologies. Often, we are called upon to assist with ventral hernia repair, especially significant ruptures that cannot be addressed with simple closure, and require a more intensive reconstruction. We are proud of our reputation in the field of ventral hernia repair.
Treating Ventral Hernias
There are a number of options available for ventral hernia repair. Your plastic surgeon will select the ideal option depending on the severity of your hernia.
For more minor hernias, we may be able to perform an open hernia repair. This requires a small incision above the hernia, allowing us to push the protruding tissue back into place and then repair the opening in the muscle wall. In some cases, steel mesh may be required to fortify the muscle wall.
Component separation may also be an option. This is a type of advancement flap using the rectus abdominis muscle. The benefit of this technique is that it allows the closure of large abdominal defects while also reinforcing the abdominal wall.
The rectus abdominis muscle is covered by anterior and posterior sheaths. By separating these sheaths from the muscle, a surgeon can increase the distance that the muscle may be stretched. Often, this procedure can be performed laparoscopically.
Post-Procedure and Repair
Many patients who have ventral hernia repair work are able to go home the same day; in some cases, we may ask the patient to stay in the hospital overnight for observation, allowing us to ensure their body is beginning to heal as intended.
Due to the effects of the anesthesia, patients will need to allocate at least three or four days to rest and recover. Additionally, patients are prohibited from heavy lifting or strenuous exercise for at least six weeks.
While recovering from ventral hernia repair, it is important to be mindful about diet, focusing on high-fiber foods to minimize any strain during bowel movements. Your surgeon can provide you with more specific dietary guidelines.
Wound care will also be a critical part of the ventral hernia repair recovery process. Your surgeon will tell you more about how and when to change the bandages that cover your wound site and how long you will need to leave those bandages in place.
Learn More About Ventral Hernia Repair
A ventral hernia can cause intense pain and discomfort, and ultimately requires the intervention of a reconstructive surgeon. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms of a ventral hernia, we welcome you to contact Thrive Reconstructive Surgery.
The surgeons of Thrive Reconstructive Surgery will discuss all your options with you and develop a ventral hernia repair treatment plan during your consultation appointment. Complete an online appointment request or contact our offices today.