In the wake of celebrating National Healthy Weight Week last week and many of us setting New Year’s goals for losing some extra pounds, it’s important to understand how our weight can influence our risk for hernias. Obesity may lead to abdominal hernias that need hernia repair in Houston. Also, excess weight may increase the risk for complications during and after surgery.
Obesity Increases the Risk of Developing a Hernia and Hernia Complications
Being overweight or obese can increase your risk for many health complications. For example, it increases the risk for cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. However, what many people don’t realize is that it can also lead to needing hernia repair in Houston. Obesity can increase the pressure in your abdomen, putting extra strain on your abdominal muscles. This can make them weaker and may lead to internal tissues pushing through the weak areas. This is called a hernia. In many cases, obesity can make the hernia larger and may even increase pain. Weight loss alone has helped some patients lessen pain and reduce the size of the bulge. However, it’s important to note that rapid weight changes, whether loss or gain, can also increase the risk of a hernia. This rapid changes can increase the pressure on the abdominal wall.
Also, obesity can increase the risk for hernia complications that require help from your hernia specialist in Houston. For example, one study found that the risk of incarceration, which is where the tissue gets stuck and can’t be pushed back inside the abdominal wall, goes up with obesity. In addition to the increase in this risk, it also becomes significant in patients with a BMI of over 40. Incarcerated hernias are dangerous, as they can lead to tissue death or bowel obstruction.
Obesity Also Increases the Risk for Complications and Recurrence after Hernia Repair in Houston
Obesity can also complicate hernia repair in Houston. First, obesity often means longer operation times and may mean a longer stay in the hospital. In addition, being overweight or obese can also increase your risk of hernia recurrence. Hernia recurrence is when your hernia returns after hernia surgery in Houston. One study found that recurrence rates were even as high as 11% in obese patients. This means that you could end up needing subsequent surgeries for recurrent hernias.
In addition, obesity increases your risk for complications after hernia repair in Houston. Several studies have shown that obese patients have a higher risk of infection and poor healing after surgery. Also, obese patients are at a higher risk for blood clots after surgery. Therefore, in some cases, it may make sense to attempt to lose weight before your hernia surgery. Generally, if your hernia isn’t life-threatening and your BMI is 35 or over, your hernia specialist in Houston may work with you to find ways to reduce your weight before operating.
At Texas Hernia Specialist, we provide high quality, personalized hernia care to help you feel better as soon as possible. Dr. Ngo uses minimally invasive laparoscopic techniques as well as traditional open repair to help repair your hernia. Our team is here to help you find solutions to suit your circumstances. Call us today at (713) 255-6363 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Ngo. We are here for you.