ModeratorJuly 20, 2014 at 6:57 am
Hernia surgery prior to pregnancy?
Very important question.
My answer to you is not based on any scientific data, because there is none. But it is a very important topic that is a bit difficult to study.
Short answer: most pregnancies have no problems after hernia surgery nor without hernia surgery.
– in my practice, I do not recommend any hernia surgery unless you are symptomatic or it is growing larger, unless you have a femoral (low groin) hernia, which should be repaired regardless.
– for inguinal (groin) hernia, repair prior to pregnancy has generally not caused any problems with pregnancy nor complicated the need for C-section. Pregnancy while still having an inguinal hernia is generally safe, with low risk of complications.
– for umbilical or abdominal wall hernias, I do not recommend repair until after all pregnancies are done unless you are very symptomatic from the hernia. The chance of a complication during pregnancy (from having a hernia) is generally low. If you do have a very symptomatic hernia and it is a small one (2 cm), I recommend no mesh placement. However, if mesh is placed, there is a risk if localized pain as your belly enlarges.
– need for immediate surgery while pregnant is generally safe and can be done without general anesthesia.