Open Hernia Repair

Hernia is a condition characterized by the bulging of the abdominal tissue from the abdominal wall. Surgery is the mainstay for treating hernias. Both laparoscopic and open hernia repair are effective in treating hernia. However, in some cases, the surgeon prefers open repair to laparoscopic hernia repair surgery. Open repair surgery effectively treats all types of hernias, such as groin hernia, ventral hernia, flank hernia, and incisional hernia.

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  • Preparing Patients for Hernia Repair Surgery: The patients should follow all the instructions of the surgeon. They should avoid eating or drinking for at least 4-6 hours before the surgery. Medications that enhance the risk of bleeding, such as aspirin, should be discontinued at least one week before the surgery. If any medication is required to be taken before the surgery, it should be swallowed with a small sip of liquid. The patients may expect complete health checkups, blood tests, and imaging tests before the surgery. Avoid smoking at least a week before the surgery, as it may delay recovery.
  • Open Hernia Repair Surgery: The surgery is performed with the patient in a supine position under local or spinal anesthesia. A liner incision is made by the surgeon parallel to the ligament to access the hernia site. The surgeon gently places the herniated tissues back and places a mesh to support the weakened muscles. The incision is closed with sutures and sealed with a dressing. The surgery takes around two hours to complete.
  • Post Surgery Care: Caring after hernia repair surgery is essential, as improper care may lead to complications, such as swelling, infection, and discharge. The patient is kept on a liquid diet for 24 hours after the surgery. The patients should avoid driving for at least a week and strenuous physical activity for at least two weeks after surgery. However, the surgeons advise the patients to walk frequently.
  • Managing Complications after Surgery: The complications of open hernia repair surgery are infection, bleeding, allergic reaction to anesthesia, damage to the nerve, and hernia recurrence. The doctor may prescribe medications, such as analgesics, anti-inflammatories, and antibiotics, to manage some of these symptoms.


Open hernia repair is a surgical procedure used to treat hernias. It involves making an incision near the affected area and repairing the weakened or torn muscles through sutures, mesh placement, or both.

The duration of open hernia repair surgery depends on various factors such as the size and complexity of the hernia. On average, it can take anywhere from 30 minutes to a couple of hours.

Yes, most often, open hernia repairs are conducted under general anesthesia. This ensures that you are completely asleep during the procedure and do not feel any pain.

The recovery period varies for each individual but typically ranges from a few days to several weeks. You may be advised to avoid strenuous activities for a certain period and gradually resume normal activities as guided by your surgeon.

Open hernia repair surgery is recommended over laparoscopic surgery if the patient has significant tissue bulging with weakened muscles. While laparoscopic surgery allows the insertion of only a single mesh, open hernia repair surgery allows the surgeon to place two meshes for better muscle support.

Patients with current tobacco use, coagulopathy, obesity (BMI >35), and a history of allergy to anesthesia are not recommended to undergo open hernia repair surgery.