Hernia- Risk Factors, Complications And Preventive Measures

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 Family history – The risk of inguinal hernia increases if the

person have a close relative, such as a parent or sibling, with

the condition.

 Certain medical conditions – Having cystic fibrosis, a lifethreatening

disorder that causes severe lung damage and often

a chronic cough, will develop an inguinal hernia.

 Chronic cough – A chronic cough, such as occurs from

smoking, increases the risk of inguinal hernia.

 Chronic constipation – This leads to straining during bowel

movements – a common cause of inguinal hernias.

Excess weight – Being moderately to severely overweight can

put extra pressure on the abdomen.

Pregnancy – This can both weaken the abdominal muscles and

cause increased pressure inside the abdomen.

 Certain occupations – Having a job that requires standing for

long periods or doing heavy physical labor increases the risk

of developing an inguinal hernia.

 Premature birth – Infants who are born sooner than normal

are more likely to have inguinal hernias.

History of hernias – If the person had one inguinal hernia, it is

much more likely that they will eventually develop another –

usually on the opposite side.


Not necessarily dangerous in themselves, inguinal hernias can lead to

life-threatening complications.

Most inguinal hernias enlarge over time if they are not repaired

surgically. Large hernias can put pressure on surrounding tissues – in men

they may extend into the scrotum, causing pain and swelling.

But the most serious complication of an inguinal hernia occurs when a

loop of intestine becomes trapped in the weak point in the abdominal wall.

This may obstruct the bowel, leading to severe pain, nausea, vomiting

and the inability to have a bowel movement or pass gas.

It can also diminish blood flow to the trapped portion of the intestine –

a condition called strangulation, that may lead to the death of the affected

bowel tissues. A strangulated hernia is life-threatening and requires

immediate surgery.


We can’t prevent the congenital defect that may lead to an inguinal hernia, but the following steps can help to reduce strain on the abdominal muscles and tissues:

  • Maintain a healthy weight.

  • Avoid constipation.

  • Emphasize high-fiber foods.

  • Lift heavy objects carefully or avoid heavy lifting altogether.

  • Avoid smoking.

  • Yogic exercises assure a normal individual of his physical well

being; They also both curative and recuperative in action.


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