Hernias

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by jmiller, Sep 9, 2008.

  1. jmiller

    jmiller New User

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    So i had a hernia over the summer and the doctor advised me to get surgery. I waited until summer was over, as i was teaching tennis and i needed the money (broke college student here). So about a week before school starts i had the surgery and everything went fine my doctor told me no heavy lifting and no vigorous physical activities/sports for 5-6 weeks. So it has been about 3 weeks now and was wondering if doing some light hitting would be bad for me? or should i just suck it up and go through my tennis withdrawals until i am "fully healed"? Or maybe somebody has had a hernia before what have you done? Just trying to get some opinions.
     
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  2. albino smurf

    albino smurf Professional

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    Wait the 5-6 weeks. You will regret it for along time if you re-injure yourself. I had a friend that did this and he was out for six months from tearing/re-injury.
     
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  3. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    If you got the plastic mesh, you should be ok at this point. Do some light hitting, but save the matches for later.
     
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  4. Spokewench

    Spokewench Semi-Pro

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    Follow you doctor's orders. Even if you don't tear it again, you can injure the nerves in the area and it can bother you for a long time. That is what happened to my husband when he went back to riding bikes too soon.
     
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  5. JRstriker12

    JRstriker12 Hall of Fame

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    I'd ask your doctor.

    Better to be 100% than hurt yourself again.
     
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  6. topsltennis

    topsltennis Semi-Pro

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    Are we talking about "sports hernia" or an actual hernia when you have a bulge, etc.?

    I was diagnosed over a year ago with a sports hernia and I have continued to play on a daily basis since with varied amounts of pain depending on the day. The strange thing with my injury is how the pain has moved around the groin area. Initially, most of the pain was isoloated to the left side- then the center, then the right side, near the hip area. Now, most of the pain I get is in my lower back. I also get shooting pains down my inner thighs when I really have to move hard to a ball. I don't know how much I'm making things worse, but I've been able to deal with the pain and play right though. I also have inflamed knees and Golfers Elbow. The knees and elbow are just chronice overuse type injuries, the sports hernia I believe was an actual acute injury (I think I tore it almost doing the splits going for a ball on clay). It's a tough injury to diagnose accuratley from everything I've read.
     
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  7. jmiller

    jmiller New User

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    It was an actual hernia, 2 actually. There was a large bulge on the right side of my groin area and a smaller tear on my left side. I actually first noticed a small bulge back in March but thought nothing of it, until I started teaching tennis at the start of the summer. My second day of training I was playing a guy and at the end of the day the bulge was really big and that is when I concluded I have a hernia. Went to the doctor and he confirmed and said I should have surgery right away. I refused cause I needed to work so I scheduled my surgery towards the end of August and played and taught tennis through the summer.
     
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  8. WildVolley

    WildVolley Legend

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    Listen to your doctor and don't do anything heavy. Exercise moderately if you feel healthy, but don't push it.

    I started playing tennis lightly about 2 weeks after my surgery, and I believe I pulled something. That set my recovery back for months.
     
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  9. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    Here's a question I haven't seen answered in my internet research on hernias: Let's say you're going to get the surgery in a month, for example. What can you do in the meantime? Can you continue lifting weights heavy and playing tennis and doing whatever the hell else you like to do, or are you supposed to baby it even before you go under the knife?

    I may have myself a small inguinal hernia apparently. I will soon see a specialist or surgeon to confirm, and then probably have the surgery, but want to minimize the time this stupid thing takes away from weight training and/or tennis. If I can't get around to the surgery until a month or longer from now due to my schedule or the doctors, can I work out as hard as I was working out until two days ago when I made the mistake of going to the doctor for my minor groin pain?
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2009
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  10. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    You should take it easy before the surgery even if you have a set date. You want to avoid strangulation of your intestines which is why Maurice Gibb died. Just because you know you're repairing it, doesn't mean you can abuse it until then. That's like driving your car recklessly just because you're replacing the transmission in a month.
     
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  11. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    I bet Maurice Gibb strangled his hernia by hitting those high notes, not doing the bench press. Me and my brothers never formed a singing group, and thus, my case is different than his.

    I don't want to "abuse" my hernia, if in fact I have one. I simply want to continue doing what I was doing up until my dr's appt, which was lifting heavy weight and which I never noticed causing me any pain.

    Basically, you're asking me to stop driving because I'm replacing the transmission in a month, and I'm saying I'd like to continue driving until the day I drop it off at the shop.

    As I understand it, isn't a strangulated hernia a rare thing, and in any case, not necessarily going to kill you -- it would just mean your elective surgery becomes an emergency surgery?

    I think what would make more sense as a deterrent to me is if someone said "Evidence shows that continued weightlifting on strenuous activity will likely increase the size of the hernia, which in turn makes the surgery longer/harder and the recovery time longer/harder."
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2009
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  12. dirkgnuf

    dirkgnuf Rookie

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    heycal, I've been unfortunate enough to have an inguinal hernia a few years back and the advice to take it easy is spot on. Sure, you mayprobably get by with no consequences but I'd advise you to take a break till the surgery in terms of heavy physical exertion. Finally, if you disagree or seek a more qualified opinion, you can always consult the doctor about it.
     
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  13. JSE

    JSE Rookie

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    Dude, ask your doctor! Don't take any of our advise, seriously. Unless someone here is a medical doctor, has your medical records in front of him/her and has personally examined you, that person simply does not have any medical expretise to give you advise. Muscles aches, pulls, sprains and strains are one thing. Hernias are an entirely different ball game. About the only advised anyone here can ligitimately give you is to listen to your doctor.
     
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  14. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    What in your experience suggests that taking it easy is the best advice?

    What kind of proceedure did you have? How long were you out for?
     
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  15. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    What? I didn't say not to drive the car, I said not to drive the car recklessly. Stop being so stubborn.
     
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  16. roc17355

    roc17355 Rookie

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    I myself have the same problem, when I went to my primary care physician he diagnosed it and said to not do any lifting especially abs, legs back etc but could do some arm stuff. Then when i went to the surgeon who suggested I not operate unless it gets noticeably worse, like to the point where I couldn't stand the pain. He said I could perform as normal and just see how it goes, it won't heal itself but it if didn't get any worse he didn't feel there was a need for surgery. So there you have it.
     
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  17. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    Even doctors can give bad advice, and can disagree about such things. I like hearing thoughts and experiences from all sorts of people.
     
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  18. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    Well, I'm the closest thing you've got to an MD so just listen and do as I say.
     
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  19. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    Who said I wanted to start driving recklessly? I just want to continue driving at the speed limit.

    Thank you for proving both of my points in my one perfect anecdote: That doctors can disagree, and that people on this forum can offer interesting insights into such matters.

    So what happened? How long has it been? What did you? How old are? What are/were your symptoms? Tell us more.
     
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  20. JSE

    JSE Rookie

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    Hearing thoughts and experiences from all sorts of people is one thing but for someone here to tell someone light hitting should be fine at this point is just irresponsible.

    Yes doctors can give bad advise but who would you want to bet your health on, a medical doctor or someone who has no medical training what-so-ever? For me, I will listen to a doctor who is familiar with my specific health history every time. The fact is nobody here knows the original posters detailed medical history in regard to his hernia.
     
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  21. diadorakuerten

    diadorakuerten Rookie

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    I ran a marathon before getting surgery

    I ran the Miami marathon before going under the knife. I asked 3-4 doctors and they all said it was ok to run the marathon. I was very skeptical and didn't want to have a strangulation during the race but luckily nothing happened. I was running up to 70 miles a week in my training and also playing tennis and had the surgery 3 days after the marathon. I am now recovering and played tennis for the first time today. I had the surgery on Jan.28th so it's been exactly three weeks since the surgery.

    I had minor pains when I was playing tennis today and my movement around the court wasn't great but I was still happy with the way I played considering I hadn't played in a month (I'm a 5.5 level player.)
     
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  22. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    Of course nothing happened. From what I understand, strangulation is a very rare thing, so it's not surprising to me that your doctors would poo-poo a risk of that happening during the Miami marathon. Also, there seems to be trend towards allowing people to continue activity with certain conditions instead of the old "stop everything and rest" school of thought. I've posted a NY Times article on that topic at least twice before on these boards.

    Can you tell us more about your hernia and its symptoms? Your surgery? Your age, etc? Tell us your story, diadora guy!
     
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  23. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    Update on this: So I went to a see a surgeon. He confirmed that I have inquinal hernia's on both sides, though the left was of no concern to him at this time. The right one, which is causing me some discomfort but has apparent bulge, is not critical, but he did recommend it get fixed. (I was hoping he'd be like the other poster's doctor and say "Nah, no surgery needed for you yet. Don't come back unless it's killing ya!")

    He said the main reason to have the surgery at the soonest convenient time was two-fold:

    1) It's easier to fix when smaller, and

    2) Better to take care of it now if you can spare the time than have it start really bothering you later at some point when it might not be convenient to get the surgery and you're forced to endure the pain. (Like if you're on a cruise to Antartica or whatever).

    He also said if if starts to bulge out and can't be pushed back in when lying down, I should come in. I said "I'll think about all this. But in the meantime, I'd prefer to continue living life as normal, lifting weights and doing whatever else I'd like". He said "Of course. You'd be crazy not to."

    So there you have it, all of which seems imminently sensible.
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2009
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  24. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    Are you still blaming me for your double hernia?
     
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  25. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    Only partially.

    If I recall, you diagnosed a sports hernia, a 'femoral' hernia, and this is not it.
     
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  26. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    But where's the diagnosis?
     
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  27. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    What do you mean? The original injury you diagnosed as a sports hernia and I diagnosed as a groin strain was located in the right leg area attached to the torso. You know, where you feel groin strains.

    Almost a year later, a dull pain developed in the right testicle (tee hee) and above and around it, and felt unlike the groin strain did. Doctors call it inguinal hernia.
     
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  28. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    I couldn't find the thread where you did your Arnold impersonation and all.
     
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  29. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    It's not a tumor!

    I don't think that injury was a hernia, and still don't. I can still feel that injury sometimes, and tweaked it about two months ago, but it feels different from the current problem.
     
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  30. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    Yeah, I've read that before somewhere.
     
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  31. Dedans Penthouse

    Dedans Penthouse Hall of Fame

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    "u-m-m-m-m.... good!"

    Rickson, the least you could do for giving heycal inaccurate information (esp. regarding "precious cargo") would be to "teabag" him.

    Tenderly.

    With finesse.


    :cool:--"in a funk?...allow me to 'dunk'!"
     
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  32. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    I gave him the most accurate info out of all the posters who attempted to help him. Cal blames me for being correct about his hernia.
     
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  33. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    It's not a sports hernia, you teabagger!
     
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  34. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    Inguinal hernias are a form of sports hernia, you teabagging victim.
     
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  35. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    They are different injuries. You suggested I had a femoral hernia, not an inquinal one.

    Are you saying it's not possible to get a groin strain after playing tennis in April of 2008 and then to start feeling symptoms of an inguinal hernia in February 2009 (while also discovering I had the beginning of an inguinal hernia on the left side)? That they must be one in the same problem or somehow connected?
     
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  36. JT_2eighty

    JT_2eighty Hall of Fame

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    So, if you're still around heycal, how did this work out for ya? I've had an inguinal hernia since late Jan2010, and it's now late April2010, I've been playing my normal indoor tennis 2-3x a week with it, no changes in status. When I lay down, it can still be pushed back. Oddly enough my off-season for tennis is summer, as my indoor leagues in fall/winter are more competitive/important to me than summer "fun" tennis, although still the prospect of summer surgery still sucks as bad. The bad thing is I have a business trip in June, so I really wouldn't be scheduling my surgery until Jul or Aug?

    I know i'm really taking some chances on such a delay, but anyone else delay hernia surgery for over 6 months from initial diagnosis? What about these herbal hernia remedies? How did cultures deal with hernias before the days of outpatient surgery? UGH dang hernia :x

    Edit: to add, I'm 29, if that affects anything.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2010
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  37. El Diablo

    El Diablo Hall of Fame

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    Was it Systemic Anomaly who suggests you just slap some Kinesio Tape on the thing? IT PROMOTES CIRCULATION!!!
     
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  38. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    I postponed the surgery. It's bothered me off and on since, but I'm still not quite ready to go under the knife.

    As for herbal or other remedies, I'm under the impression there is no real cure or treatment for hernia and no getting better except surgery.
     
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  39. Ken Honecker

    Ken Honecker Rookie

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    As far as hernias go the bigger the better, or at least the safer. I had one about half as big as my fist for years before I bothered to even have it looked at. Heck I'm not certain what I did to bring it on but have a sneaking feeling that it was when I was lifting up on one side of a Pontiac big block 400, having a friend shove rims under it and then rolling it the other way so we could block up the other side until we got it tall enough to slide onto the frame. 600 oddly shaped pounds is awkward.

    I followed the docs orders and as soon as he said go I started volleyball without much trouble.
     
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  40. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    I have no idea what you are saying. Big hernias are better/safer?

    What doctor's orders are you referring to? Post surgery, or what?
     
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  41. JT_2eighty

    JT_2eighty Hall of Fame

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    So have you been able to do all your normal stuff (tennis, exercise, weights, etc?)

    Anything you notice you had to tone down on?

    Yea, i'm not sure what the "bigger the better" comment means. i'd assume the bigger it gets, the more of your tissue/intestines are entering the hernia area and that would be a bad thing?

    Mine hasn't changed since it first popped up, but for me, I've stuck to my same tennis frequency of play and it hasn't gotten bigger or smaller. I actually played 4 matches in 3 days just this past weekend, and no pain or change in status, so I guess I'll postpone surgery as long as I can. I've never gone under the knife before, so meh, not too thrilled about that prospect.

    I don't lift weights so that's at least one thing I didn't have to stop or be careful with.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2010
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  42. jimanuel12

    jimanuel12 Semi-Pro

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    i have had multiple hernia surgeries over the years, and I ALWAYS follow my doctor's advice.
    i know too many people (usally men) that don't follow their doctor's advice and end up having to have the surgery again.
    take it easy, don't over do it and when you are healed up, then youi can play again.
    if you screw around and tear the hernia again, you will be laid up twice as long.
    just some advice from someone who has been there, done that.
     
    #42
  43. JT_2eighty

    JT_2eighty Hall of Fame

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    So I guess the next question is, open surgery vs. laparoscopic?

    I know I'm young (29), but man, this past year has opened up a whole new can of injured worms into my world. Arm pain, knee pain, and now a hernia. And I was going to try to live it up my last year as a 20-something. All i've been able to do is "ice it up" instead, but of course, things could be worse so I'm not complaining. And I'll be able to usher in my 30s with some new scars, lol.
     
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  44. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    No, I didn't change anything in my behavior, and when the pain does come and go, I can't necessarily associate it with a known cause like lifting or whatever. Seems somwhat random and unpredictable.
     
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  45. JT_2eighty

    JT_2eighty Hall of Fame

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    Thanks for the replies. I'm torn (no pun intended) between having the surgery this summer or waiting more. I'm playing the best tennis in my life this year, I just can't sideline myself right now. It doesn't hurt at all, not even during tennis, so I guess I'm going to put surgery on hold til a better time. I know most will say this is naive, that I could be putting myself at greater risk later on, but am I really? It sounds like a few people have gone YEARS with their hernias without fixing it, so I guess a few months for a 29-yr old should be ok?

    Bleh, it is annoying, and I guess the real test is going to be how things work out with this girl I just met... nevermind tennis, how about the other aspects of daily life... just my luck.
     
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  46. Ken Honecker

    Ken Honecker Rookie

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    My bigger the better comment dealt with the fact that the chances of gizzards getting pinched off and going bad are much higher if you have a small tear. If you have a sizable one stuff just hangs out a bit but doesn't get constricted.

    I do have to point out that anything that leaves ones danglies bruised is major surgery. I was stiff as a pig for the first day or 2 post surgery and had a heck of a time get up and down from the bed. I took 3 weeks off from work and manged to tape and mud my basement rec room so as long as you are careful you can move about.
     
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  47. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    I would think the risk of serious harm or death from strangulation is rare. The bigger downsides are the risk that it will really bother you -- ok, me too -- at a very inconvenient time, and the pyschological black cloud that hangs over our heads knowing that we are puttting off the near-inevitable.

    But I like to comfort myself with "maybe I'll get hit by a bus and killed, and never have to get the surgery at all!"

    Somehow I'm skeptical the AMA would back up Dr. Honecker's views on hernias...

    This is the kind of story that makes people like me postpone the surgery.
     
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  48. Ken Honecker

    Ken Honecker Rookie

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    I'm pretty sure this is pretty much what the doc told me but that was over 20 years ago. It certainly seems reasonable that things would have less a chance of getting pinch sloshing back and forth through a 3 in gap rather than squeezing through a 1 inch opening. I do agree that strangulation is probably a pretty rare occurence.

    As for the bruising, the danglies weren't sore, merely discolored. Really 2 days down time is about it, then a week of careful movement.
     
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  49. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    What doesn't seem reasonable is to think that a big fat protruding hernia is better for you than a small one.
     
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  50. charliefedererer

    charliefedererer Legend

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    Ken,

    You remembered correctly what your surgeon told you that small hernias indeed are more dangerous in that a small loop of bowel could get more easily "pinched" inside and cause strangulation. You are also right that thankfully this is a fairly rare occurence.

    And heycal is also right that no one wants a really big hernia.

    But hernias will not go away without surgical repair. Therefore it is generally recommended to have them repaired as soon as practically possible. So that someone is not so unfortunate that they are the one to have a strangulation occur. And so the hernia will not continue to enlarge into a big hernea that is more difficult to repair, and takes a longer time to recover from.
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2010
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