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What is a Hernia?

Anyone – men, women and children – can get a hernia.

A hernia is when an internal organ bulges through a weak area of muscle.  It can occur when a muscle is weak or strained, mostly in the abdomen.

Signs and symptoms of a hernia can include pain, discomfort or swelling. If a hernia is left untreated, it can cause severe pain and lead to other health problems.

How Does a Hernia Occur?

A hernia can occur for various reasons:

  • When a muscle is weak or strained – for example, during heavy lifting, when muscles are stretched during pregnancy or significant weight loss, or straining during a bowel movement.
  • When a medical condition, such as lung disease or an enlarged prostate, causes increased pressure in the abdomen.

Some people are born with weak abdominal muscles, making them more susceptible to developing hernias.

Different Types of Hernias

The physicians at Mercy Health System are skilled in treating the different types of hernias, including:

There are all types of hernias