An inguinal hernia occurs when tissue, such as part of the intestine, protrudes through a weak spot in the abdominal muscles. The resulting bulge can be painful, especially when you cough, bend over or lift a heavy object.
An inguinal hernia isn't necessarily dangerous. It doesn't improve on its own, however, and can lead to life-threatening complications. Your doctor is likely to recommend surgery to fix an inguinal hernia that's painful or enlarging. Inguinal hernia repair is a common surgical procedure.
June 15, 2016
- Brooks DC, et al. Classification, clinical features and diagnosis of inguinal and femoral hernias in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 27, 2015.
- Ramsook C, et al. Overview of inguinal hernia in children. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 27, 2015.
- Groin hernia: Inguinal and femoral repair. American College of Surgeons. https://www.facs.org/~/media/files/education/patient%20ed/hernrep.ashx. Accessed Dec. 27, 2015.
- Inguinal hernia. National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse. http://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-topics/digestive-diseases/inguinal-hernia/Pages/facts.aspx. Accessed Dec. 27, 2015.
- Treadwell J, et al. Surgical options for inguinal hernia: Comparative effectiveness review, No. 70. Rockville, Md.: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; 2012. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK100633/.