Reply To: How long can inguinal hernia repair be expected to last

Hernia Discussion Forums Hernia Discussion How long can inguinal hernia repair be expected to last Reply To: How long can inguinal hernia repair be expected to last

quote Good intentions:

Good luck. I really do hope that you’re lucky enough to have a good experience. Your story is essentially exactly what several people have been describing. Reassuring words, from the same playbook, but no direct evidence. Did he describe any patients that he worked on who he’s been in contact with, confirming the things he was telling you? What you were told is what everybody is told. I hate to be cynical but it really is, almost to the word. Also, you’ve chosen the surgeon who said the most comforting words.

You’re going to wake up and find that he did find a small defect on the other side and placed some mesh there. It really doesn’t make sense, for those believing in the power of the mesh, to dissect that large area of tissue, then just leave it with no mesh placed. There will always be a lipoma or a small stretched area, that is a “defect”. Again, this is my cynical view. But there really is a “wave” of mesh apostles out there.

Can you remember the “certain things” that he told you about people who have mesh problems? The “skinny people tend to have more problems” meme is out there, but it seems to be used after the fact, to explain problems, rather than as a screening tool for patients. Curious to know what he told you.

Again, good luck. But you’re on the well-worn path. It’s hard to get off of it.

He really didn’t explicitly say anything on this topic. It was honestly more me saying it and him nodding his head. That was a very short and minor part of the conversation. I had already made assumptions on this topic based on the other conversations I had and my research, so I didn’t make this a primary focus of this visit and didn’t dwell on it. I would summarize his comments as basically saying that with the robotic laparoscopic surgery (which allows a much clearer and focused picture of the tissue and all of the nerves etc.) and the placement of the mesh in that type of surgery, that the incidence of pain and complications with smaller hernias is low.

And I would actually say of the two surgeons, on balance it was in fact the first one that was more reassuring (though neither was doomsday about it). I chose this surgeon 1. because my main PCP recommended him, 2. because hernias are one of the operations he performs the most and he has extensive experience with the laparoscopic robotic tools and 3. his demeanor and patience and thoughtful answers (though again, I liked both surgeons). He also does surgery on cancer patients routinely. Obviously a surgeon who performs hernia repairs routinely with mesh is confident that it’s a good way to repair a hernia and isn’t likely to suggest that a potential patient has a good chance of having complications or pain. And I gather given that one of his primary surgeries is hernia repair and he’s been practicing for decades that he has likely performed a couple or several thousand at least, and has a sense of the success rate and continues to do the surgeries because he believes they work well. I don’t think many of these surgeons though have very detailed reporting they share with patients about follow-ups, but I can certainly ask if there’s anything they can provide.

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