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What is a Hernia?

A hernia occurs when tissue pushes its way from one area, where it is normally present, into another area, where it is not. It may pass through a very narrow opening in this process. Some hernias move back and forwards freely; others become trapped. If tightly trapped, the blood and nerve supply to the herniated tissue may be restricted and the tissue becomes painful and dies.

Hernias usually need to be surgically repaired to prevent intestinal damage and further complications. The surgery takes about an hour and is usually performed on an outpatient basis (which means the patient can go home the same day of the procedure). This surgery may be performed by an open repair (small incision over the herniated area) or by laparoscopic surgery (minimally invasive). Your surgeon will determine the best method of repair for your individual situation.

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