An inguinal hernia occurs when, due to an injury or weakness of the abdominal wall, the organs in this area come out forming a visible bulge. There are two types of inguinal hernia, direct and indirect, and both conditions contemplate surgery as the only alternative treatment. Depending on the type of hernia that the person presents, the intervention may require local or general anesthesia and recovery can be ambulatory or involve at least 2 days of hospitalization.
Postoperative care of an inguinal hernia operation is very important to avoid wound complications, such as wound infection or suture breakage. It is also essential to use techniques to control inflammation and the use of certain pain medications. We invite you to continue reading this article by FastlyHealto learn about the care after an inguinal hernia operation.
Basic care and recovery after an inguinal hernia operation
After an inguinal hernia operation, the person, if hospitalized, can go home after a couple of days and must carefully follow the medical instructions on the care that should be offered to the wound, the assigned rest time and the activities not allowed. The main care after an inguinal hernia operation are:
- The suture points can be internal or external. The former fall off on their own, the latter must be eliminated by the medical specialist in postoperative consultation and when indicated.
- The wound will be covered by a gauze with medical adhesive. It is important to change the bandage once a day, disinfect the wound with antibacterial or iodine and bandage again.
- The inguinal hernia operation usually causes a lot of pain during recovery, it is normal for these pains to intensify with any movement. To prevent this, avoid being very active for the first few days.
- Tiredness and fatigue are common symptoms after any surgical intervention. As recovery progresses, energy will regain.
- It is necessary to have the support of family and friends to make limited movements. Also to help with personal hygiene, food and the supply of medicines, since the ideal is to stay in bed for the first 3 days of rest.
- Swelling and pain in the testicles is common in men.
- It is also normal to have difficulty urinating.
- Bruising around the groin or testicles disappears in about 2 weeks.
How to manage the pain of an inguinal hernia operation
The medical specialist will surely warn you before the person goes home: the pain after an inguinal hernia operation can be very strong. To handle it, the first thing you should do is classify it according to its intensity and follow the recommendations that are offered to each case:
- Mild pain: it is moderate and appears occasionally. It does not limit a person’s movements or activities, and is easily accommodated by over-the-counter pain relievers.
- Frequent pain: the pain usually lasts longer and can limit the performance of some activities such as playing sports
- Severe pain: the pain is almost constant and prevents activities as simple as walking. It improves over time, but may be so strong that superior prescription pain relievers are necessary.
After surgery, medical specialists will help control the pain with intravenous medications that work very quickly and allow the person not to feel bad. However, once you are home and when you begin to regain movement, the pain can become a major discomfort.
To relieve pain after an inguinal hernia operation, it will be necessary for the person to consume pain relievers and anti-inflammatories prescribed by the doctor. If the pain is classified as severe, it is important to contact the doctor, detail the symptom and follow his recommendations. In general, the pain caused by this type of surgery should never limit simple activities such as walking, it is a discomfort that can vary between frequent and mild.
How to care for the wound from an inguinal hernia operation
Before going home, the doctor will indicate how many days the bandage must remain on the wound and when it must be changed. During the first days, it is normal for the wound to show some bleeding or discharge, applying an antibiotic gel or cream will be necessary to care for the wound and prevent infection.
It is important to gently wash the wound with plenty of water and antibacterial soap to prevent germs or bacteria from contaminating it. This should only be done from the moment the surgeon instructs it, usually two days after discharge. It is very important to avoid any type of bath in a jacuzzi, swimming pool, bathtub, etc.
If the wound is inflamed and secretes a yellow substance, it is important to call a doctor immediately, as both symptoms are signs of infection.
In the following article we detail the steps to heal a wound .
Diet after an inguinal hernia operation
An unhealthy diet, excessive drug intake, and post-operative stress can cause the body to respond with a temporary picture of constipation. If this were to happen, it is important to incorporate foods rich in fiber into the daily diet that help purify the liver and intestines to stimulate intestinal transit. If this measure does not combat constipation, you can buy a drink to soften the stool, which is generally found in almost all pharmacies and is available over the counter.
Drinking water is also very important to stimulate less painful bowel movements. When going to the bathroom, it is recommended to avoid making all kinds of effort and not pushing, since this stimulus can affect the points of the wound. In the following article we show the best home remedies for constipation .
It is important to protect the injury from the sun for at least 1 year to ensure a minor scar.
Limited activities during recovery
Rest is a fundamental piece in the recovery of an inguinal hernia operation. Therefore, it is important to take adequate time to rest , lie down, avoid sudden movements and not make any kind of effort that could mistreat the wound.
It is best to resume activities progressively, starting with walking, then driving and, when the doctor allows it and the person feels ready, resume sexual activity. The most normal thing is that the individual does not feel like making any kind of effort during the 2 weeks following the operation.
If your postoperative pain is severe and you are taking narcotic pain relievers, it is important not to drive after an inguinal hernia operation. Other recommendations are:
- Do not lift any object that weighs more than 4 kilos.
- Do not lift any type of weight for 6 weeks.
- Do not do any activity that causes pain.
- No activity should be done that will pull on the wound.
- Only the doctor can indicate when you can play sports again.
When to go to the doctor
- Severe pain and swelling
- Hemorrhage from the operation wound.
- Difficulty breathing.
- Dizziness that does not disappear over the days.
- Heat or redness in the wound.
- Pain during urination
- Testicular swelling and pain that does not respond to medications.
This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.
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I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.