A build-up of pressure within the abdomen can push a piece of the intestine into the femoral canal (this is tubular passage at the front of your thigh). This pressure can vary from prolonged constipation, swelling of your internal organs (such as the bowels themselves), obesity, or ascites (fluid build-up in the abdomen). Likewise, pregnancy can cause inguinal hernias in the mother for the same reason.
Straining on the toilet, whether for passing a stool or urinating, can force the intestine to pop out of the femoral canal. Likewise, if you are giving birth the likelihood of a femoral hernia developing increases as the pressure on the lower abdomen grows.
Engaging in heavy lifting, such as in the gym, in your workplace, or at home, can increase the risk of developing a femoral hernia. Here, it is important to comply with situational instructions and making sure you take it easy when engaging in these risky activities.
Long-term, chronic, or heavy coughs can shock your intestine into pushing through a weak-spot around your femoral canal.
It is important to have a femoral hernia treated quickly, as there is a high risk of it becoming strangulated and rupturing within your femoral canal. This is because of the position of the femoral artery, around your groin and leg joint.
Likewise, a femoral hernia can block the femoral canal, making blood flow through the artery more difficult.
Large hernias may be more noticeable and can cause some discomfort. A bulge may be visible in the groin area near your upper thigh.
The bulging may become worse and can cause pain when you stand up, lift heavy objects, or strain. Femoral hernias are often located very close to the hip bone and as a result may cause hip pain.
Severe symptoms can signify that a femoral hernia is obstructing your intestines. Severe symptoms of a femoral hernia may include:
- Severe stomach pain
- Sudden pain in your groin
- Nausea and/or vomiting
Call 999 and seek immediate medical attention if you suffer from these symptoms. Emergency treatment can fix the hernia and save your life.
Laparoscopic surgery for femoral hernias
Our laparoscopic surgery requires a few small incisions around the groin using a machine controlled by experienced and highly skilled clinicians. You will be placed under general anaesthetic for the procedure.
Using a lightweight, synthetic mesh, our surgeons push the femoral hernia out of the femoral canal and back into the abdominal cavity, and cover it in a lightweight synthetic mesh which strengthens the abdominal wall, preventing the hernia from popping out again. This technique is referred to as an umbrella hernia repair.
Previous patients who have received this treatment with the mesh have recommended it rather than a manual pulling of the muscles together to heal the weakness, which can be more intrusive. This less invasive surgery takes 45 minutes from start to finish, and is a day-care case, meaning you can arrive and leave on the day of the surgery.
Risks associated with femoral hernia surgery are generally uncommon, however, they still exist. Indeed, they are more common in older individuals than younger individuals.
More pertinent to femoral hernia surgery is that there may be difficulty passing urine or stools after the surgery, as well as temporary weakness around the leg joint and muscles down the leg.