Here’s what you need to know about hernia treatment
June is Men’s Health Awareness Month, and a local health system shares all about some critical medical issues in men, and new technologies and how they can help solve them.
Dr Michael Albrecht, director of the Center of Excellence in Robotics at Northeast Baptist Hospital, explained some common problems he is able to help resolve medically, including hernias in men.
Baptist Health System offers the latest technology, including minimally invasive procedures to help patients cope with medical conditions such as hernias – to help individuals live healthier, more productive lives, Albrecht said.
As a certified general surgeon, what kind of men’s health issues can you help your patients solve?
“The most common thing I’d like to talk about is what we see most often in men, (which) are hernias,” Albrecht said. “About 1 million hernia surgeries are performed each year in the United States. And of the most common, 90 percent of these occur in men. In fact, 3% of men will suffer from a hernia in their lifetime. It may not sound like a lot, but with conditions that require surgery, it’s a pretty high incidence. In fact, it is probably the most common operation that we do here as general surgeons.
What exactly are hernias, what are their causes and what are the main treatments for them?
“Well, a hernia, in general, is a weakness or a hole in the muscle in the abdominal wall,” Albrecht said. “And there’s an abnormal protrusion, either a tissue or an organ that goes through that hole or that weakness. They can start off very small as a lump and be very asymptomatic, or they can progress, especially during physical activity or exertion. But a simple cough or sneeze can block it and make it very painful. And sometimes it becomes an emergency.
“As we come out of the pandemic (and the state of relative inactivity most of us were in, we start to go back to physical work. We start to resume physical exercise. And that is.” why we are seeing more frequency of occurrence occurring. Treatments include, really, this is one of those conditions where there are really no good nonsurgical alternatives. A hernia is a mechanical defect in the wall abdominal repair and also requires mechanical repair, and this is done through surgery.
So what can a patient expect from hernia repair surgery?
“There are several different ways to repair hernias,” the doctor said. “The traditional, what we call ‘open repair’, has been around for a very long time. More recently, we know that laparoscopic hernia repair is a better repair overall. It is safer, there is less risk of recurrence and less risk of infection. And it seems that patients return to normal activity and work much earlier. “
“Even more recently, at the Northeast Baptist Robotics Center of Excellence, my group is very proficient in repairing these robots, which is a laparoscopic technique,” said Albrecht. “By using the Da Vinci robot, we noticed that there is actually even less pain. In fact, many patients do not need any pain medication after surgery. To be honest, the biggest challenge in doing it robotically is preventing patients from doing too much, too soon. There is still a tight time frame when we don’t want you to overwork yourself and work on the healing process. But most patients feel like they can do a lot more, a lot sooner than we really want. “
Baptist Health System is a trusted provider of hospital, health, and wellness services in San Antonio and South Texas, Baptist said.
The system includes six acute care hospitals (Baptist Medical Center, Mission Trail Baptist Hospital, North Central Baptist Hospital, Northeast Baptist Hospital, and St. Luke’s Baptist Hospital) in San Antonio and Resolute Health Hospital in New Braunfels, which provide more than 1,700 beds allowed.
To find a doctor with Baptist Health System, click or tap here.