An important part of a surgery is what happens after it. After inguinal hernia surgery, the patient needs to know what care to take after the intervention and when they can return to their usual activity.
If the hernia surgery London specialists perform the intervention in the morning, the patient might go home that same day in the afternoon or the next day in the morning.
Surgery can be performed laparoscopically, which facilitates earlier recovery, or by traditional open technique.
In laparoscopic surgery, general anesthesia is used (“complete” anesthesia, fully asleep) and in open surgery usually spinal anesthesia (asleep from the waist down). In both cases that same afternoon the patient can get up, drink liquids and solids and have pain controlled. If these criteria are met, the patient can go home.
After surgery, a soft diet can be followed the first week, gradually reintroducing the normal diet.
Food rich in fibre is recommended, and drinking plenty of water to avoid constipation because abdominal strain can trigger pain in the surgical area.
The main medication needed is pain relievers. Usually minor pain relievers, for example, Nolotil, Paracetamol, or Enantyum.
Take them 2 or 3 days scheduled every 8 hours, and then take them as and if there is pain. These guidelines are usually sufficient to control pain in most patients.
In the case of laparoscopic surgery, the wounds are smaller and the mesh is not fixed with stitches, so patients usually report little discomfort or mild pain.
To avoid the appearance of a hematoma (accumulation of blood) in the wound, it is recommended that you wear tight underwear. It is normal for the wound to stain a little fluid or blood.
The wounds must be kept clean and dry, that is, the patient can shower, but then dry the wound and clean it with povidone-iodine or similar, putting a clean dressing afterwards. The wound should not stay wet. The wound should NOT be submerged, patients should not take baths or use jacuzzis (whirlpools) or go swimming during the first week after surgery
It is best to check the wounds in the clinic/hospital 7-10 days after surgery, to remove the approximation strips. Usually, specialists do not use stitches or staples, they put approximation strips, so they achieve a more aesthetic wound and no discomfort is caused when the strips are removed.
You can gradually resume normal activities, such as walking, driving, and sexual activity, when you feel ready. However, you probably won’t feel like doing any strenuous activity for a couple of weeks.
- Avoid lifting weights (more than 4 kg) and performing abdominal effort for 3 to 6 weeks (in laparoscopic surgery, 3 to 4 weeks are recommended and in open surgery, 5 to 6 weeks to return to work that requires effort).
- If possible, avoid any activity that causes pain or pulls on the surgical site.
- You can walk not very long distances, increasing progressively from 3-4 days.
- To drive we recommend waiting about 15 days, as long as it does not cause pain. Usually driving a car is not an activity that harms the intervention but when mobilizing the groin it can cause discomfort or pain.
- In case of coughing, put your hand on the wound and press lightly.
- Protect the incision area from the sun for 1 year to prevent the scar from becoming marked by staining.
The Following Are Common – Don’t Be Concerned
- Mild pain on mobility
- A sensation of the wound pulling, punctures…
- Discomfort and stiffness at first, especially when moving.
- You may feel tired after surgery, this can last for a few weeks.
- Men may have swelling and pain in the testicles.
Bruising around the groin and testicular area is common.
The review with the surgeon is performed 7-10 after surgery to review the wounds and one month after surgery to assess the patient’s situation before discharge.
When to Consult with A Hernia Surgeon London Specialist
You should consult with your surgeon if:
- The wound has changed in appearance and has become red, inflamed, hot, hard, or draining.
- There is heavy bleeding from the surgical incision.
- You experience fever of 38 °C or higher.
- You suffer testicular pain or swelling that gets worse.