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Why are hernias a problem?

Hernias can be a problem because they can cause symptoms such as a bulge, pain or swelling.  Depending on the specific type and location, a hernia can lead to constipation or a bowel obstruction.  You can have persistent pain if your hernia cannot be pushed back inside the abdominal area. This is called an incarcerated hernia. It is a concern because the contents inside the hernia can lose their blood supply, which can lead to a hole (perforation) or tissue death.

Hernias are a problem because they can lead to many serious complications. Hernias commonly involve the abdominal wall, and while they may initially be painless, in some cases the intestines may become trapped in a hernia, leading to a loss of blood supply and death of that tissue. If this occurs, urgent surgery is sometimes required and may result in the loss of part of the intestines or a serious infection. If a person has a hernia it is important to talk with a doctor, who will determine if it needs to be surgically repaired to prevent any serious complications.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.