What Can I Expect for My Hernia Recovery?
Whether to relieve pain or for aesthetic purposes, many people undergo surgery to repair a hernia. This surgery essentially requires a surgeon to make an incision and then push the protruding intestine back into place. The surgeon then will reinforce the abdominal wall with internal sutures or synthetic mesh to ensure that the hernia does not come back.
As with any form of surgery (plastic, cosmetic, or other), hernia repair surgery requires some downtime. This recovery period causes many men and women unneeded worry. If you are looking at repairing a hernia and are nervous about what to expect after your surgery, here is some information to help calm your mind.
The Recovery Period
Each individual patient heals at their own pace, which means that there is not one single, definitive answer to the question: “How long is the recovery period for hernia repair?” However, there is a general timeframe that many patients adhere to.
You will likely experience bruising and soreness during the days following your hernia procedure. Prescription and over-the-counter medication can be taken to alleviate any pain you may feel during the days after your surgery, but please contact Dr. Moore if the pain persists or increases. Along with discomfort, you will probably feel more tired than normal. Most patients begin to feel better after the first week, but soreness and bruising can last up to several weeks. Depending on your type of job, you may be able to return to work within the first few weeks after your hernia repair, though Dr. Moore will be able to give you a better idea of how much time you should expect to be off of work.
Do’s and Don’ts During Recovery
One of the most important things to remember during your hernia repair recovery is not to push yourself. It is important to understand that your body has been through a traumatic event. The best thing to do is allow your body to heal itself.
While it is important to move your body (such as taking short, slow walks) as this helps with blood circulation, which in turn helps speed up and improve your recovery, you need to make sure that you refrain from strenuous activities, including exercise and lifting anything of weight. You should also refrain from any sexual intercourse for a few weeks, as these activities can put unneeded pressure on the repaired location.
Diet During Recovery
It is just as important to eat and drink correctly after your surgery as it is to stay rested and relaxed. Eating healthy will only help strengthen your body to repair itself. This means that you should stay away from processed foods that are high in salt and sugar. Additionally, it is important that you drink plenty of water, as this also helps your blood circulation. If you experience any stomach problems from your diet after your surgery, try to incorporate more bland foods, like rice and bread, to your diet for a few days. You will eventually be able to return to your normal diet, but it is important that you get yourself healed first.
For more information about hernia surgery, please contact Patrick Moore MD, FACS by calling 951-477-5700.