Skip to content

    Children's Health

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Inguinal Hernia: Surgery in Children - Topic Overview

    An inguinal hernia will not go away without surgery. Most hernias in children are indirect (the abdominal tissue has bulged down the inguinal canal). These hernias need to be repaired, because they are likely to become incarcerated.

    Prompt surgery is needed for younger children especially, because they may not complain about pain until there is a risk of the intestine becoming tightly trapped and its blood supply being cut off (strangulation).

    • Hernias that are incarcerated, even if they can be pushed back into the abdomen, need to be repaired as soon as possible because of the risk of strangulation.
    • Surgery may be delayed on premature babies with hernias that are not incarcerated. Premature babies are at risk for complications before and after surgery, because their hearts and respiratory systems are not fully developed.
    • Boys who have a hydrocele and an inguinal hernia usually have both problems repaired during the same surgery.

    Surgery to repair an inguinal hernia needs to be postponed in infants who have any of the following conditions:

    • Any active infection
    • A cold or other upper respiratory tract infection
    • Presence of a significant rash in the groin area
    • Severe heart disease present at birth

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: November 14, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
    1
    Next Article:

    Inguinal Hernia: Surgery in Children Topics

    Today on WebMD

    child with red rash on cheeks
    What’s that rash?
    plate of fruit and veggies
    How healthy is your child’s diet?
     
    smiling baby
    Treating diarrhea, fever and more.
    Middle school band practice
    Understanding your child’s changing body.
     

    worried kid
    fitArticle
    jennifer aniston
    Slideshow
     
    Measles virus
    Article
    sick child
    Slideshow
     

    babyapp
    New
    Child with adhd
    Slideshow
     
    rl with friends
    fitSlideshow
    Child Coughing or Sneezing into Elbow
    Article