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Post Hernia Repair Nerve Pain


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  • Post Hernia Repair Nerve Pain

    Hi Everyone,

    i am a 37 year old male in good physical condition. I was suffering from a reflectively small right side inguinal hernia for approx 1 year that caused no pain but needed to be pushed back in regularly so I decided to have it repaired.

    I had open surgery (non-mesh) 2 weeks ago, details of which are as follows:

    -neurolysis of the illionguinal nerve
    -neurolysis and neurectomy of the genital branch of the Genitofemoral nerve
    -hernioplasty (minimal repair technique)
    -pre-peritoneal lipoma resected

    The days immediately following surgery were relatively pain free but from around day 6 I have been suffering from hypersensitivity/burning sensation that is very painful. The areas affected are from around 1cm below the incision to the base of my penis, the top portion of scrotal skin on right, the crease of my thigh/groin, the inside of my thigh and the top of the thigh to the right of the incision. The pain has not subsided since it began and is not hugely helped with pain killers (paracetemol/ibuprofen/tramadol). I'm pretty sure it's the area served by the illionguinal nerve.

    I have spoken with with my surgeon who is adamant that the pain will pass in a few weeks. I also asked why the nerve had to be removed when I had no pre-operative pain and was told that the hernia sack compressed the nerve and the nerve was adherent to the sack so had to be removed to prevent chronic pain. i was also told that the Iloinguinal nerve was protected but had to be mobilised carefully to avoid entrapment.

    I am very anxious that the pain will not subside. Any advice would be much appreciated.
    Last edited by andrew1982; 3 weeks ago.

  • #2
    Hi, I'm female and did not have any nerves cut during my no mesh inguinal hernia not the same but 2 weeks after surgery I did get similar symptoms to what you are describing in the same general areas--that did go away but two months I still have some stinging and itching the area. I'm assuming it will go away but that's just an assumption.


    • #3
      Thanks Dill. If anyone else has a view that would be much appreciated. The pain is terrible and I am feeling pretty despondent - if I'd known this was a risk I wouldn't have had the surgery.

      DrBrown drtowfigh - if either of you could comment that would be much appreciated.
      Last edited by andrew1982; 3 weeks ago.


      • #4
        Dear Andrew.
        From your description, you allodynia related to an injury to the ilioinguinal nerve.
        A nerve block can be very beneficial.
        Neurontin can occasionally help.
        Capsaicin cream can occasionally help.
        Nerve ablation can occasionally help.
        There is a chance that this will improve with time.
        You may need a neurectomy of the ilioinguinal and the iliohypogastric nerve.
        Bill Brown MD


        • #5

          thanks for coming back to mr Dr. In your experience, how long will this take to resolve if it is going to resolve spontaneously? To put in another way, how much longer should I wait before seeing a specialist?


          • #6
            Agree with Dr Brown.
            no need to wait to get the nerve blocks.
            do not contemplate any surgical intervention for at least 3 months


            • #7
              Thanks Dr Towfigh.

              Is allodyna permanent or can the nerve settle as my surgeon suggests? I am terrified this is now permanent.


              • #8
                Hi everyone - I saw a pain specialist yesterday who suggested a low dose of pregabalin (lyrica) for a few weeks to try to settle things. I also spoke with my surgeon again who insists the pain will pass spontaneously any up to 4 weeks post cooperatively. Does anyone have any views on either? Thanks, Andrew


                • #9
                  Dear Andrew.
                  I have not had much success with Lyrica.
                  A nerve block with steroids will have a much better chance to help you.
                  Nerve pain is slow to resolve. 6 months is a more likely duration.
                  Bill Brown MD


                  • #10
                    andrew1982 do you mind sharing what surgeon performed a non-mesh repair for you?

                    You can message me privately if you'd rather not share it publicly here. I am trying to maintain a list of non-mesh hernia surgeons, so any additional doctors to add to the list would be welcome

                    You last posted about a week ago, have you noticed any change in your symptoms since?

                    There is some evidence that 500mg Vitamin C daily can gradually improve nerve pain over time. Don't expect immediate results.


                    If you are located in a region that allows medical marijuana, some patients report positive experiences with reduced nerve pain over time with that as well.

                    Best of luck, keep us updated on your case and how you're doing.


                    • #11
                      Hi. I'd rather not say who my surgeon was for now. Happy to let everyone know once I've got some clarity as to what exactly is happening with my repair. I have a follow up with the surgeon a few days time.

                      The severity of the burning pain reduced spontaneously by about 30-40% overnight at week 3 but no further changes since then. This was about a week after starting pregabalin - not sure if the 2 are related.

                      My abductor is also very tight on the side of the repair and when I run my nails over the abductor I can feel sensation in my groin - all very strange. I'm stretching it and also using a theragun on it but it tightens up again fairly quickly.

                      Pain seems to be worse in the evening - it's almost as if there is increased swelling below the surgical site but not that you can see on the surface of the skin.

                      I still have a lot of numbness around surgical site.

                      I'm already taking high dose vitamin c and also CBD oil to try and help as well as a load of other supplements that I have read might help.

                      I'll keep you all updated.


                      • #12
                        Dear Dill. Please tell me where you did your operation.thanks.


                        • #13
                          your information on the intervention is quite detailed and the deductions would seem to give reason to Dr. Brown who claims that it is better not to touch the nerves in any way. In your case the neurolysis does not seem to have worked. I understand that you feel like a guinea pig because many of us expect to know what you will do and with what improvements


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