In the cavity containing your intestines and other structures are four layers of abdominal wall providing protection. Sometimes, weak spots can develop in the wall muscle. It causes abdominal contents along the inner layer to push through the abdominal wall and form a lump or hernia. The best way to deal with the hernia is through surgery.
There are different surgeries you can undergo. One of them is laparoscopic surgery.
What Does It Involve?
Laparoscopic hernia surgery requires a general anesthetic. It ensures you are asleep during the surgery. The surgery takes 30 minutes to an hour. It begins with the surgeon making a small cut on your belly button. They will insert an instrument into your abdominal cavity and inflate it using carbon dioxide gas.
Afterward, they make two additional incisions in your abdomen. They will insert a tube with a light source and a camera through one keyhole. The other two will allow for instruments the surgeon requires for surgery. During surgery, the doctor pulls the abdominal part, causing the hernia back into place. Afterward, the doctor inserts a synthetic mesh over the weak spots, covering them.
You will awaken in the recovery room, where nursing teams will help you recover from pain and discomfort.
In the Recovery Room
You may experience dizziness, pain, fatigue, and nausea. However, these will fade away. Your throat may be sore because of the breathing tube. You can manage this using tea with honey or lozenges. The discomfort will last for about three days at most.
The nurses will monitor your vital signs. After they ensure that all is well, they will get you off the stretcher into a chair. You will have something light to drink. Within two hours, you can stand up and walk around slowly.
The doctor will allow you to go home the same day or the day after. Before they do, they will ensure you can drink liquids without vomiting or nausea. You also need to be able to walk without any dizziness. Avoid driving home or anywhere else for the first two to four days. The doctor will give you pain medication. You must avoid driving while taking it.
You may experience mild to moderate pain and discomfort in the incisional area. The pain may last for about two days, but it may also continue for two weeks. The discomfort may be due to the gas (carbon dioxide), the hernia dissection, or the mesh material. However, it starts dissipating in the second or third week after surgery.
Take lots of fluids, vegetables, and high-fiber foods during this time. They will help you avoid constipation, which could lead to straining when you go to the toilet. Straining can cause pain and complications around the wound. Also, avoid any strenuous activities or exercise for four to six weeks. Get help if you notice increased swelling, fever, bleeding, or persistent nausea and vomiting.
For more information on laparoscopic hernia surgery, visit the Laparoscopic Surgical Center of New York at our office in New York, New York. Call (212) 879-6677 to book an appointment today.