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umbilical hernia - questions I should ask before surgery?


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  • umbilical hernia - questions I should ask before surgery?

    Hi all. This is my first post. I'm 47 years old, 6'1", 250 lbs man and have an umbilical hernia. I think I got it just from being too fat. I used to weigh 280 pounds and that's when I first noticed it. No idea how it happened, it just showed up one day.

    It used to be soft but now has some hardness to it. There is no pain associated with the hernia; it's just a bulge around my belly button. My primary doctor directed me to a surgeon who I am seeing this Friday for a potential hernia surgery consult.

    My question for the board is: what questions should I ask the surgeon? Also, would it be worth it to travel to see a hernia specialist? I live about 2 hours from St. Louis and could go there fairly easily. I do have insurance.

    Thanks for any advice you can provide. I've read some of the horror stories about mesh and it definitely makes me queasy so I'd like to avoid mesh if I can.

  • #2
    Dear Umby.
    Since you have minimal symptoms you do not have to have the hernia repaired.
    The hardness is fat stuck in the defect, and is your body's way of trying to plug the defect.
    If you decide to have the hernia fixed, then lose more weight prior to surgery.
    If the defect is less than 3cm in diameter, then a suture repair is the best choice.
    Bill Brown MD


    • #3
      Thank you, Doctor Brown, for the clear and concise guidance. I appreciate it.


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