Ventral Hernias

What are ventral hernias?

A ventral hernia is fatty tissue or bowel that protrudes through a hole or defect in the abdominal wall muscles, often creating a bulge. A ventral hernia can occur anywhere on the abdomen. The name depends on the location of the hernia (i.e., umbilical hernias occur near the belly button).

Some people are prone to hernias due to genetic weakness in the abdominal wall. Other people acquire hernias through lifting, strain of the abdominal wall, or obesity.

What are the symptoms?

  • Abdominal pain
  • A “bulge” that is often tender to touch
  • Constipation
  • Vomiting

How is it diagnosed?

Doctors use a physical exam and may use imaging studies, such as an ultrasound or a CT scan, to make a diagnosis. 

Why should I get my hernia surgically repaired?

At present, the only treatment for a hernia is surgery. In addition to causing pain, they can