Understanding Hernia -- Symptoms

What Are the Symptoms of a Hernia?

For inguinal, femoral, umbilical, and incisional hernias, symptoms may include:

  • An obvious swelling beneath the skin of the abdomen or the groin; it may disappear when you lie down and may be tender.
  • A heavy feeling in the abdomen that is sometimes accompanied by constipation or blood in the stool.
  • Discomfort in the abdomen or groin when lifting or bending over.

Symptoms of a hiatal hernia may include heartburn and upper abdominal pain.

See Your Doctor About a Hernia If:

  • You suspect that you have a hernia.
  • If you can't get the hernia to go back in; seek medical care immediately, as this is an incarcerated hernia and can lead to organ strangulation.
  • You know you have a hernia, and you have pain, are nauseated and vomiting, or are unable to have a bowel movement or pass gas; you may have a strangulated hernia or an obstruction. Seek medical care immediately.


WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on January 16, 2020


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