A femoral hernia usually won’t cause any symptoms unless it becomes large enough to obstruct your intestines—a condition known as strangulation. If this occurs, femoral hernia symptoms may include:
- Visible bulge in the groin near the upper thigh
- Pain in the bulge that gets worse when straining
- Hip pain
- Severe abdominal pain
- Sudden groin pain
- Nausea and vomiting
A femoral hernia that is not causing symptoms may not require any treatment, though your doctor may monitor the hernia closely to see if it grows larger or if your symptoms progress. They are usually only treated when they start to produce pain or discomfort.
Surgery is the standard treatment for a femoral hernia that is causing symptoms. Surgery may be performed as an open surgery or as laparoscopic surgery—the latter of which is far less invasive and associated with less downtime and a shorter recovery.
You may need surgery if it is causing pain and discomfort, including when you stand up, lift heavy items or strain in any way—such as when coughing or having a bowel movement. You should also consider surgery if your symptoms are affecting your overall livelihood and well-being.
Contact your doctor if you think you may benefit from having surgery to repair a femoral hernia. Your doctor can perform a physical exam to identify whether the hernia is bulging out of your thigh or groin, as well as an ultrasound to get a clearer view of the protruding tissues in your muscle wall.
How Is Surgery Performed?
Surgery is performed under general anesthesia. If you are receiving laparoscopic surgery, your surgeon will make three or four tiny, keyhole-sized incisions in your groin near the site of the hernia. These small incisions will minimize blood loss and allow you to experience a faster recovery.
Next, your surgeon will manipulate the tissues protruding from the femoral canal to return them to their proper positions. Then, the space created by the hernia will be closed and reinforced with a piece of mesh to strengthen the wall of the femoral canal.
Most patients can resume light activities within two weeks after femoral hernia surgery and experience a full recovery within six weeks. Your surgeon can tell you more about what to expect from femoral hernia surgery based on the severity of your condition.
Advanced Laparoscopic Associates offers a wide range of bariatric and general surgeries. If you think you may have a femoral hernia, contact us today to request an appointment and discuss your treatment options.