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My IH Repair by Dr. Kang

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  • My IH Repair by Dr. Kang

    In a word, the repair was painless, both operation and the post-op. It wasn’t the ordeal that I had first imagined. My only problem was getting out of bed the first several days after surgery, something the doc said was not usual. However, once my body repositioned, any pain left.

    I am writing almost five weeks post-op and having returned to my two-mile runs. I have not done my usual pursuits—basketball, golf, dance— by personal choice. I feel capable but unsure yet. You see, I have been diagnosed with at least another IH (on the opposite side) but it remains hidden. So I have a lot to consider.

    Going to South Korea was easy for me: no visa required; great food and friendly people. Seoul is an international mega-city with typical amenities you find anywhere. After diagnosed with my first hernia about a year ago, I happened to find Dr. Kang (www.gibbeum.com) on the internet and followed up his work. For the year, my left IH was painless and small. So I imagined that maybe I could live with it! But like a lightning bolt everything changed when my IH enlarged. Though still painless, it hardened a bit and became less easily reduced. I resolved to get the surgery and did it nine days later.

    Dr. Kang is one of the most inspiring people I know. I was impressed by his having been a mesh doctor only to leave that for pure tissue repair. (An incredible move for any professional—mainstream to the minority by choice!) He further appears to be eclectic and has worked to refine his own approach. Unbelievably, he does hundreds of IH surgeries monthly. The month before my surgery he did 250; sometimes ten a day. (Typically the operation, he says, is for twenty minutes.) A general surgeon would be lucky to do a fourth of that volume! He directs his own hospital also and holds at least one medical patent (used in colonoscopy). Like a scholar, he takes a measured view of his work and avoids hyperbole (of course). He has a great sense of humor and is easy to talk with.

    Dr. Kang is assisted by an interpreter, Stephen Kwon, but is still quite capable in English. Actually, he spoke with me in English without interpretation. Stephen’s great role is guide for the foreigner and helped me through each step from my filling out forms right up to when I was wheeled into the operation room. Stephen, also a chaplain, became a great companion waiting with me from each step to the next prior to surgery. These steps include the legal and financial forms, diagnosis by ultrasound, an allergy test for anesthesia, your BP reading etc., and so on. Stephen plays a vital role throughout.

    As of this writing, $3,000 is a package price, including anesthesia and an optional one-night hospital stay. For peace of mind, I recommend the foreigner take the hospital stay. Moreover, a week’s stay in Seoul is highly recommended. Further bring a pillow you can sit on in taxi rides. My impression is that the taxi cars there are not so smooth-riding as back home; they can be rocky. Sideway jolts particularly can bring unease. I used my legs as shock absorbers and held my hand on my groin to get me through.

    The operation: anesthesia will make you sleep temporarily until midway when Dr. Kang asks you to cough. You sleep but still rely on your own breathing. I was blessed to have a pleasant dream allaying my fear otherwise. I absolutely felt no pain throughout. The next day when Dr. Kang came to look at my incision, it looked beautiful even to me.

    Post-op: painless but I don’t know if I really needed the pain killer pills received. I took them for two reasons: 1) I didn’t want to discontinue the possibly good effect; and 2) I might have caught a cold and the drug could help for that. For at least several days, my bed in the morning was soaked by my sweat. I was feverous, something I read can happen after surgery. In my case, I left my hometown in the middle of intense summer heat and maybe was affected by the really cold rooms from airport to airport and finally my hotel room.

    Surprise: I was expecting to use ice during post-op. I had read various accounts on the internet by people saying “ice is your best friend” for the post-op. But Dr. Kang said, “no, not cold but heat heals.” (He might have thought I meant something else.) I had expected some throbbing pain post-op! But none as I found. I happily could not test the theory.

    In short: if you want an extremely experienced and skillful IH, non-mesh surgeon who uses absorbable stitches external and internal, makes a relatively small incision (and beautifully), and all done painlessly, then I fully recommend Dr. Kang.



  • #2
    Thanks for sharing your experience. Can you show your incision picture if it's possible?

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi Pinto. Indeed thanks for sharing in detail and glad to know about the positive outcome. I am interested to know why both hernias weren’t repaired? And what was the reason to choose general anaesthetic instead local. Down to your experience would you advise others not to wait and rather have a repair at early stage.

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi Pinto. Thanks indeed for your review in detail. I am glad to read your positive outcome. Down to your experience would you advise others to repair hernias at early stage? Why haven’t you repaired both hernias but only one? What made you choose general anaesthetic instead local?

        Comment


        • #5
          Hi Pinto. Thanks indeed for your review in detail. I am glad to read your positive outcome. Down to your experience would you advise others to repair hernias at early stage? Why haven’t you repaired both hernias but only one? What made you choose general anaesthetic instead local?

          Comment


          • #6
            He was under local anasthetic, but also under propofol sedation that put you to light sleep, but you breath on your own. That's not general anasthesia, but is the best option for thouse who goes under local, you just don't feel all thouse manipulation of surgeon with you tissues.

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            • #7

              Bestoption, you ask, why do the surgery? I was hit with a lightening bolt. Watchful waiting only buys time. IH will never go back in time. That is, it only increases in size (in most cases) and significantly, increasingly making surgery more difficult or risky. I was under false hope that I could ride out my IH a few years or more! Once I found the IH get bigger, my whole being switched into survival mode. I happened also to have a convenient time to have the surgery. It became a no-brainer: do it now!
              About anaesthesia, I didn't want general, but didn't say so. Rather I raised the topic, and was satisfied about their explanation. Technically, it wouldn't be general as I could breathe on my own. If in fact it was general, I'll take it! I'll take it! Excuse the humor, but if propofol, then I understand why Michael Jackson used it.
              I had blissful sleep and a most, most pleasant dream. I had no bad after-effect, nothing. If propofol, given the risk, I praise the Lord as well as the Dr. Kang team. I have no other experience, only what I've read. Hearing columb.if's conjecture makes me feel even happier I chose Dr. K.
              About the bilateral issue: I'm willing to roll the dice because I have no obvious symptom yet--no pain or protrusion. Yes, it's curtailing my life, but possibly I can gradually get most of it back.
              Columb.if's, per your request, I took a pic with my ipad but having trouble getting it out. Apple surely has hit the skids with its manufacture in Steve Jobs' absence.

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              • #8
                This website system sucks!! I just made thoughtful replies only to tell me that they are unapproved for unknown reason.

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                • #9
                  Columb, thanks for the explanation. I was not aware of this type sedation.

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                  • #10
                    columb.if and Bestoption, yesterday I replied to your posts but they were blocked as "unapproved." System bug or censorship? I hope not the latter.

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                    • #11
                      ☺️columb.if I fixed it
                      #ItsNotJustAHernia
                      www.BeverlyHillsHerniaCenter.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Many thanks for that.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Pinto. When I replied couldn’t see your 2nd response,
                          therefore I agree that the system of the website sucks.
                          I’ve been also having loads of unauthorised messages and is quite annoying to rewrite the messages.
                          Anyway, thanks for the answers and I am happy to read positive experiences with Dr Kang.
                          I am trying to loose some weight before committing to surgery as really want the best possible outcome. But due to hernias it ain’t easy. Diet on its own is not enough. But I am afraid to go back cycling or other exercises to make the hernias worse. So the current progress is very slow, too slow.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Bestoption, from one member to another about exercise: test the water before you take the plunge. The problem about IH is that there are too many factors to isolate what one(s) are causative. And most of all: most herniae don't grow smaller, they grow bigger. Despite my continual caution about it, my hernia enlarged. Multiple docs told me that running would be ok for me. I did so as long as it was painless. I believe it was ok. But for weight training I'm not so sure. My training was very limited and surely did not include squats or crunches. I remember reading the lament by a women with an IH who wishes she hadn't followed the advice that exercise could heal a hernia. Her condition greatly worsened, which especially for pure tissue repair can negatively affect surgery. I hope you are able to find an effective but safe method.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by pinto View Post
                              Bestoption, from one member to another about exercise: test the water before you take the plunge. The problem about IH is that there are too many factors to isolate what one(s) are causative. And most of all: most herniae don't grow smaller, they grow bigger. Despite my continual caution about it, my hernia enlarged. Multiple docs told me that running would be ok for me. I did so as long as it was painless. I believe it was ok. But for weight training I'm not so sure. My training was very limited and surely did not include squats or crunches. I remember reading the lament by a women with an IH who wishes she hadn't followed the advice that exercise could heal a hernia. Her condition greatly worsened, which especially for pure tissue repair can negatively affect surgery. I hope you are able to find an effective but safe method.
                              Thanks for the above and will take into consideration. I don’t need heaps but about 5-6 kg would be ideal to get rid of if more also no harm

                              Comment

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