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Incisional Hernias

Written by Dr. Anitha Paderla | Medically Reviewed by Dr. Sunil Shroff, MBBS, MS, FRCS (UK), D. Urol (Lond)
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Incisional Hernias - About

Incisional hernia in the abdomen is due to weakness of the wall of the surgical scar and leads to protrusion of the intestine.


"A surgeon can do more for the community by operating on hernia cases and seeing that his recurrence rate is low than he can by operating on cases of malignant disease"

Sir Cecil Wakely-

President: Royal College of Surgeons (Eng) 1948

Incisional hernias can range in size from very small to large and complex and appear as a bulge at or near the area of a previous surgical scar. Nearly any prior abdominal operation can develop an incisional hernia, however they most frequently occur along incisions running down from the breastbone to the pubic area.

These hernias may occur after large surgeries such as intestinal or vascular (large arteries, and veins) surgery, or after smaller surgeries such as an appendectomy or an even through the small scar of a laparoscopy wound.

Surgical correction of Incisional hernias is usually recommended, as they carry a potential risk of becoming strangulated at the opening in the abdominal wall and having their blood supply cut off. If this happens it becomes a medical and surgical emergency.

It is especially advised that these hernias be repaired via a TENSION FREE repair method. If the defect is very small, it may be closed with strong non-absorbable sutures. If the hernia defect is larger, it should be closed with a piece of synthetic mesh as incisional hernias have a high rate of recurrence if repaired under tension.


Inguinal Hernia symptoms animation
Inguinal Hernia surgery animation

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Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.


murugu123, India

i am 54 years lady at present i have an incisional Hernia, 4 years back i had undergone operation uterus removing whether immediate surgery is required but i don't have any pain

Sarahsue, United States

10 days Post op from ingiunal repair recurrence and femoral hernia repair (same side). Cement Twinkie at the surgery site. Anyone? I am a 42 y/o female.

Marc_Twain, United States

My 73 yr old mother needs umbilical hernia repair. Skeptical about medical procedures, she is put it off til it is bigger. Does not like idea of Biologic implants. What is safest mesh material to use? Or, in general, which mesh material has the least complications / lawsuits ? Polypropylene, polyester,...what ? Thank you for any anticipated answer.

Squeeker, United States

I am scheduled to have a rather large Incisional Hernia repaired, because it is such a large hernia my surgeon has recommended using MESH. I have heard a lot of negative things regarding MESH and do not know which Mesh would be the safest to use. Do you have some suggestions on which MESH would be best?
I did express my concerns to my surgeon but there was no recommendation. Also I was told that if you could have a Cosmetic Surgeon join in with your Surgeon you may have much better results. Is this true?

akab66, Ghana

Hi also had umbilical hernia repair surgery 2 months ago and am experiencing burning sensation and pain around the incision. I am passing gas frequently and feel tired often. Have had issues with bloating and pain in the upper part of my stomach for some time and have been told there may be some adhesions. Its just a pity the Doctors do not tell you much about the recovery process and they make you think the surgery is just a simple procedure.

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