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Hernia Care

At Baptist we believe hernia repair should include immediate access to medical care, pain management, and quick treatment for a fast recovery. Hernias can range from uncomfortable to excruciating, so our hernia treatment specialists offer same-day appointments to get you in, get you better and get you back to your life.

Hernia

Hernia treatment at Baptist

The Baptist Hernia Center focuses solely on hernia treatment, including hiatal hernia, inguinal and umbilical hernia and ventral hernia. 

Hernia treatments are outpatient procedures that are extremely low-risk and well tolerated by people of all ages. Because we have a dedicated hernia center, Baptist hernia specialists in San Antonio are focused on the latest technology and techniques to ensure recovery happens quickly and completely.

We offer:

  • Same day appointments
  • Board certified surgeons with experience treating all types of hernia
  • Advanced pain management techniques
  • Minimal post-op discomfort
  • One visit to the hospital and minimal hernia center visits
  • Special area for hernia patients in the hospital
  • Two-week recovery time that gets you back to action faster

“New mesh helps doctors repair hernias.”

Types of hernia, hernia treatment options & pain management

What is a hernia?

A hernia is an opening or weakness in the muscular structure of the wall of the abdomen. This defect causes a bulging of the abdominal wall. A hernia can worsen when abdominal pressure increases through activities such as lifting or coughing. 

Imagine a barrel with a hole in its side and a balloon that is blown up inside the barrel. Part of the inflated balloon would bulge out through the hole. The balloon going through the hole is like the tissues of the abdomen bulging through a hernia.

Serious complications from a hernia result from tissue becoming trapped in the hernia, a process called incarceration. Trapped or incarcerated tissues may have their blood supply cut off, leading to damage or death of the tissue. Ignoring a hernia can affect your ability to function and cause intestinal obstruction, which can lead to major surgery.

Types of hernia

The most common types of hernia are:

  • Hiatal Hernia
  • Inguinal Hernia
  • Ventral Hernia

hiatal hernia occurs when the upper part of the stomach pushes up into the chest through a small opening in the diaphragm, the muscle that separates the abdomen from the chest.

Most small hiatal hernias are relatively harmless, and you may not even know you have one unless your doctor discovers it while examining you for another condition.

A large hiatal hernia, on the other hand, may allow food and acid to back up into the esophagus. This can result in heartburn and/or chest pain. Large hiatal hernias sometimes need surgical repair that can often be done laparoscopically. Learn more about hiatal hernias

An inguinal hernia is a bulge that occurs in your groin region, the area between the lower part of your abdomen and your thigh. Inguinal hernias occur because of a weakening of the muscles in the lower abdomen. Inguinal hernias are fairly common, affecting millions of Americans a year. Causes include obesity, pregnancy, heavy lifting and straining to pass stool. Learn more about inguinal hernias.

A ventral hernia (incisional hernia) is a defect that can develop in the abdominal wall, around the navel, in the groin or anywhere else a surgical incision has been made. Part of the bowel or intestine may protrude through a weak spot or tear in the thin muscular wall that holds the stomach and other organs in place. The resulting bulge or tear in the abdominal muscles can often be repaired with advanced laparoscopy. Our surgeons use advanced hernia repair technologies to reinforce or bridge abdominal wall hernias for extended support during and after wound healing.

 

Landon Wellford, M.D, a 53-year-old father who suffered an inguinal hernia, says hernia treatment at Baptist is easy and a lot less painful than he thought it would be.

“When I got the hernia, I was weightlifting with my son. I’m like ‘Move over; I’ll show you how it’s done!’” Landon laughs. “And then ‘Oh my’ – I felt the hernia pop.”

Landon went to Mike Albrecht, M.D., at the Baptist Hernia Center to have his hernia fixed. “I’m a cardiologist, so I know where to go for the best,” says Landon. He credits advanced surgical technology and pain therapy for an easy recovery.

“The entire post-op course I took three Tylenol and that was it!” says Landon. “It was a good decision.”

Hernia treatment

Hernia treatment is specific to the type of hernia you have. While some may be treated with medication or may just need to be monitored, many require outpatient surgery. To learn more about hernia treatment, read about the different types of hernia:

Pain management

Hernia repair may cause postoperative pain, so our hernia surgeons use a leading-edge pain-relief system for continuous delivery of local anesthetic directly into a surgery site. This method can lead to quicker mobility and a faster recovery. Your doctor will discuss your pain management options with you to ensure maximum safety and comfort.