Hernia Repair Care

Learn what care is required for the Hernia Repair procedure. Find out what you need to do prior to the procedure, how long it will take, if you will be required to stay in the hospital and what the postoperative care is.

Hernia Repair Details

Alternate Names for Hernia Repair:

What to Expect Prior to Procedure

Your doctor may do the following:

  • Physical exam
  • Blood tests
  • Urine tests
  • Electrocardiogram (EKG, ECG)-a test that records the heart's activity by measuring electrical currents through the heart muscle
  • Talk to your doctor about your medicines. You may be asked to stop taking some medicines up to one week before the procedure, like:
    • Aspirin or other anti-inflammatory drugs
    • Blood thinners, such as clopidogrel (Plavix) or warfarin (Coumadin)

On the days before and the day of your procedure, your doctor may recommend that you:

  • Follow a special diet.
  • Take antibiotic medicine.
  • Shower the night before, using antibacterial soap.
  • Arrange for someone to drive you home and to help you at home.
  • The night before, eat a light meal. Do not eat or drink anything after midnight.
  • Wear comfortable clothing.


Depending on the type of repair, you may receive:

  • Local anesthesia-the area will be numbed
  • General anesthesia -used most often, you will be asleep
Description of Procedure Conventional Hernia Repair

An incision is made over the hernia site. The hernia will be moved back into the abdominal cavity, or the sac may be removed. The muscles around the hernia are sewn together. This will repair the hole or weakness. If the hernia is large or in the groin, a piece of mesh will be inserted. If mesh is used, the muscle is not sewn together.

Laparoscopic Hernia Repair

A laparoscope is a thin tube-shaped object with a camera on the end. It will be inserted through a small incision. The doctor will be able to see the hernia on a near-by TV. Small instruments will be inserted through other small incisions. These tools will be used to complete the repair.

After the procedure, the incisions will be closed with stitches or staples. A sterile dressing will be applied.

Immediately After Procedure

You will be taken to a recovery area. There you will receive fluids and pain medicines through an IV. If there are no problems, you will be moved to a hospital room to recover.

How Long Will It Take?
  • Less than 2 hours
Will It Hurt?

Anesthesia prevents pain during surgery. You may feel pain during recovery, but taking pain medicine will help.

Post-procedure Care

Be sure to follow your doctor's instructions . When you return home, do the following to help ensure a smooth recovery:

  • In most cases, you can return to your normal diet after a few days.
  • During the first few days, slowly return to your normal routine.
  • Take pain medicine as needed.
  • Ask your doctor about when you can do certain activities (eg, driving, sexual activity). You may need to wait 1-2 weeks.
  • Avoid excess strain (eg, vigorous exercise and lifting) for 6-8 weeks.
The recovery time will be shorter for laparoscopic surgery.

There is some risk that the hernia could return. To reduce your risk:

  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Strengthen your abdominal muscles.
  • Treat chronic constipation , allergies , or chronic cough .
  • Eat a high-fiber diet .


Learn what Hernia Repair is
What Is
Learn what the procedure is. Find out how it is performed.
Reasons For Hernia Repair
Reasons For
Find out why and when this procedure should be done.
Hernia Repair Complications
Learn about possible complications and what might increase the risk of them.
Hernia Repair Details
What to Expect
Find out how long it will take, what they will be doing and what to expect afterwards.
Hernia Repair Results
What are the next steps and other possible tests needed after you have received the results.
When to Contact Doctor about Hernia Repair
Call Your Doctor
What to look out for and when to call your doctor after a procedure has been done.

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Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright ©2014 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved. Source: EBSCO