exception of the hernia and about 20 lbs of excess baggage (fat) am in very good health - ie: no
other health problems or defiencies. The first operation was about 5 years ago and was on the
Chopping firewood and the heavy lifting apparently brought on the second hernia which was on my left
side.For both operations they cut an incision and put synthetic mesh in to block the intestine and
prevent it from pushing into the groin area.
For both operations the doctors didn't have much of anything to say in regards to the recovery
period except -"take it easy; don't exercise for a few weeks, and be sure not to lift anything that
weighs more than 10 LBS.: for several weeks.
Recovering from the first surgery was my first intensive introduction to PAIN and I now know, that
it did not have to be that way! I was in bed for several days and everytime I had to get up out of
bed to go to the bathroom, i experienced excruciating pain - it felt like acid was being poured on
my groin area.
Taking a leak wasn't a problem, it was getting my carcass out of bed that hurt so much. There was no
pain while lying in bed. I'm usually fairly active physically, so for me this was hell. I falsly
assumed that I was supposed to spend the first few days after the operation lying in bed - "taking
it easy" -
Don't make that mistake. STAY OUT OF BED - except during your normal sleeping hours... that is
unless your doctor specifically tells you otherwise and move around - don't sit still for more than
an hour or two at a time.
THE BEST ADVICE
The recovery room nurse for the second operation told me that the best way to minimize pain and to
speed up the recovery would be to STAY UP, TO MOVE AROUND FREQUENTLY and TO STAY OUT OF BED as much
He said to eat regular meals, to take walks, to sit up, to move around frequently, and to stay
out of bed except for the normal 6-8 hours of sleep time at night. He also said to take the
meds as needed
- typically for the first 2 to 4 days. After that you should find that the need for them starts to
taper off. Of course people recovering from these surgeries are not supposed to do any heavy
lifting or running for a few weeks.
After a night's sleep - the meds have worn off and without them - for at least the first couple of
nights, getting out of bed would involve a lot of pain. So I've been taking a couple of the
painkillers prescribed to me, in bed about 20 mins before I get out of bed.
The recovery room nurse also told me to put my hand over the incision and gently/firmly press there
before coughing, and to hold my hand there when walking if desired to provide additional support.
I'm doing that some of the time and it does seem to be helping.
He also said taking deep breaths every now and then, would help accelerate the healing - by
increasing the oxygen intake.
Also, you'll probably be walking slowly and like an old man (or woman) for a few days, but don't
worry, that too will pass. You should get a little bit better every day.
My surgery was at 9 am Wed morning and I was home at 4 pm the same day. I walked around a bit
outside and inside and then took a nap for about an hour, got up and ate a light dinner, and walked
around for about half an hour. I was up moving around the house - reading, computer, and tv that
night til about 11 pm. Yesterday I did light chores around the house, and spent some time reading
I've been following the recovery room nurse's advice carrying on at home as I normally do on days
off, except there's been no lifting of anything over 10 lbs. The operation was abou 48 hours ago -
and I feel great. I will be back at work on Monday. The difference between the present recovery and
the one about 5 years ago is like the difference between night and day.
My search on the web for information on hernia recovery advice was very disappointing - so I'm
posting this in hopes that it will help some folks to have a speedy recovery with minimal pain.
I'd enjoy reading comments from others who have had inguinal hernia operations and think that others
who will be getting an IH operation would too.
Disclaimer: Since I'm NOT a medical professional - I think it's best if I encourage you to check
with your physician to get his/her professioanl opinion before following any of the suggestions in
this message. What you do or don't do doing the recovery period is very important - so for your own
good, please make sure that you give it the consideration that it deserves.
All the best,
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