What is it?
A hernia occurs when there is a hole in the muscles of the abdominal wall that can allow the abdominal contents to poke through. This can happen for many reasons, but most commonly occurs after previous surgery where there is an area of weakness. Sometimes the hernia can be so large and the muscles are so spread out that the abdomen is extremely weak and functions poorly. Large hernias can be debilitating for the patient because they cause pain, problems with eating and bowel function, and makes it hard to exercise or be active. Often patients will have to wear a binder or girdle to keep the abdominal contents tucked in and supported or they are too uncomfortable. Most hernias are treated by your general surgeon. However, when a hernia is large and complex, fixing it usually requires the additional expertise of your plastic surgeon. Our training gives us the skill to know how to rearrange muscles and skin so that we can repair the hernia and restore a functional abdomen. This usually also involves placing a mesh to strengthen the repair. The procedure is generally done in conjunction with your general surgeon because scar tissue needs to be released from the intestines and organs that are involved in the hernia. You will usually be referred to us by your general surgeon and we will work as a team to come up with the best possible plan for you. Additionally, we were also fully trained in general surgery before plastic surgery, so we have a well-rounded understanding of all of the issues involved in hernia repair and will work to give you the best treatment possible. If you need a hernia/abdominal wall reconstruction, visit us at Lift Plastic Surgery in Houston.