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  1. #1
    ლ(╹◡╹ლ) ShoulderBrah's Avatar
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    Exclamation *** OFFICIAL INGUINAL HERNIA RECOVERY Thread ***

    This thread is dedicated to hernias, hernia recovery, hernia survivors, success stories.

    I am here for any MISCer or BB.com member if you need motivation help, advice, encouragement, words of wisdom, hints, tips, tricks, or just a fellow friend who truly knows what you are going through. Please, I welcome you to PM me. If need-be, I will give you my phone number and we can talk it through.

    What is an inguinal hernia?

    An inguinal hernia is a protrusion of abdominal-cavity contents through the inguinal canal and in most cases this is the intestines breaking out of the intestinal wall forcing its way either out bulging in the lower abdomen or pushed towards the ball sack (may not have bump showing).

    Are the common?

    They are very common (lifetime risk 27% for men, 3% for women), and their repair is one of the most frequently performed surgical operations (about 600,000/yr in US). The possibility for hernias through the inguinal canal in males is much greater because they have a larger opening and therefore a much weaker wall for the intestines to protrude through.

    How does this happen?

    Causes range anywhere from lifting heavy objects to something as simple as a harsh cough. In weight lifting, a hernia may occur if too much weight is being used or if improper form is being exercised while lifting.


    ShoulderBrah's Story:

    I was doing my usual 4 sets of 245 lbs for 8 reps with squats on leg day. I was never shown correct squat form and thus found myself leaning too much forward, my chest caved, the weight was too heavy, and instead of bailing the weight off, I forced the squat up and racked the weight. I did not notice anything out of the ordinary at all. I went on to do leg presses. The following days/weeks, I noticed a moderate pain in my lower abdomen region and my groin area. I had it checked out by 2 doctors and both confirmed that I had a inguinal hernia. You can find correct squat form here: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...#post649409553

    What should I expect during recovery?

    Days 1-5:
    I sat/laid in a couch recliner 100% day/night sleep/eat/watch TV. Never left the couch.
    When cough/sneeze, brace surgical area by holding with hand while sneeze.
    When walking to bathroom, be careful, hunch over and waddle.
    When taking a crap, DO NOT try to poop, just sit there until your body forces it out on its own (might take up to 30 minutes).
    When taking a pee, do not force pee out. Let it flow on its own.
    Go to walmart and buy tighty whities. This supports ball sack.
    Your ball sack will swell up with fluid. This will cause discomfort.
    I put a small pillow/blanket under balls to prop them up while sitting/sleeping in recliner.

    Days 5-7:
    Slowly began to walk around (waddle). It is good to walk and straighten body out so stretch surgical area to get blood flowing. I went to the mall and walked for 2 hours.
    Continue wearing tighty whities to support ball sack. Sack is still filled with fluid.

    Week Two:
    I stopped taking the pain meds after 7 days because they made me nauseous and sick feeling.
    I started slowly jogging. This is recommended for blood flow.
    I continued to sleep in the couch recliner.
    Continue wearing tighty whities.

    Week Three:
    I began sleeping in a bed. It was uncomfortable to lay straight.
    Continue wearing tighty whities.

    Week Four:
    I got brave and went to the gym. I lifted 10 lb dumbbells for curls/bench/tricep overhead.
    This was SOOO important for ego. The first 4 weeks is depressing. You will think lifting is all over and you are crippled for the rest of your life.

    Month Two:
    I tried to get into a 4 day split routine. This built my confidence and got me excited. TAKE IT SLOW!!! Even if you think the weight is easy, I started with 10 lb weights and went up 5 lbs every week working my way up to my normal lifts. I returned to normal lifts after 12 weeks. This time frame will vary.


    What type of time frame will I be expecting for surgery and recovery?

    June 16, 2010: Caused Inguinal Hernia
    July 10, 2010: Doctor Felt Hernia and Scheduled Surgery Date
    Aug 10, 2010: Inguinal Hernia Surgery (Out Patient)
    Sep 13, 2010: Started lifting 10 lb weight for all exercises and started "Full Body" routine
    Sep 20, 2010: Started lifting 100 lbs on most exercises and got back into 4 day split
    Oct 25, 2010: PR on DB Inline Bench, 100 lb DB's
    Nov 16, 2010: PR on Flat BB Bench, 275 lb maxed out

    At this point in time, I was fully recovered for upper body exercises.

    What should I eat?

    Increase your protein intake tremendously.
    Take your multi-vitamin and pain meds.
    Eat as clean as you can.
    Eat at maintenance since recovery is sitting 24 hours/day.


    Things to Expect during recovery:

    Doctor and Surgeon told me that the surgical area will heal 99% after 6-8 weeks. After this time, it will be as healed as it ever will be.

    However, the first year, a good amount of scar tissue forms. This actually is a benefit because it causes the mesh to become stronger.

    The first two weeks, my surgical area felt numbed and tingly.


    What is the pain/discomfort I feel after running/lifting?
    Running causes blood to flow and stretching of the surgical area. This is a good thing. You will experience discomfort for a day or two.

    Lifting weights... if you feel pain or discomfort in surgical area while working out in gym, STOP!!!!! Stop immediately and go home and rest.

    If you want to know what to exercise or what to stay away from in the gym, just don't do any exercises that will cause your abs to tense up. Examples include, leg extensions, leg curls, squats, deadlifts, leg press, situps, crunches, standing curls, standing shoulder press, power cleans, etc.

    I slowly got back into deads and squats after my 6 month mark. Here is a video MUST WATCH for squats: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...#post649409553

    DO NOT DO ANY CRUNCHES OR AB EXERCISES!!! I would probably wait about a full year for the area to heal and the scar tissue to solidify the abs and mesh.

    If you feel no pain/discomfort during your workout, but feel dull ache/discomfort the follow day/week:

    This was normal for me. There were SEVERAL occasions when I had to go back to the doctor and surgeon to have them check out the area and do the hernia check again to make sure I did not re injure it. This was mostly a confidence/head game that I had to overcome. I still to this day have a bad day or a bad week to where discomfort bothers me, but it surely goes away after a couple of days or a week.

    I was so paranoid about re-injuring it. The doctor assured me that my surgical area will be ready before I am mentally ready. Remember the area is 99% healed after 6-8 weeks? This still doesn't mean that you should start off lifting your 315x8 bench press in week 9!!! Start off small and work your way up slowly. Be careful not to put any pressure on your abs/midsection.


    Getting back into Squats/Deadlifts!

    If you are sitting at 6 months, you probably feel like you may be ready to get back into these two exercises. In my case, I was fine. I started squating and deadlifting the bar. This was humiliating but entirely necessary. I slowly worked my way up. I has been exactly 8 months for me now and I have finally reached the point of deadlifting 315x8 just as I used to before my injury. There are times that I feel pressure in my abs and I stop... or sometimes I'll just do 225x8. These are just examples of my experiences.

    I started squating again. Watch this video series: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...#post649409553

    I began squatting at 6 months with bar and then at 7 months 135 lbs, and now at 8 months, I can squat 185x5 with no issues. I am still working slow not rushing because I know it is not worth going through this again. I don't want to get another hernia.


    Motivation/Encouragement:

    I know that this is one of the toughest things you may have ever gone through. It is humiliating, demoralizing, humbling, painful, makes you angry, impatient, etc. Healthy lifters in the gym that have never faced a hernia have NO CLUE how lucky/fortunate they are!!!

    I am here for any MISCer or BB.com member if you need motivation help, advice, encouragement, words of wisdom, hints, tips, tricks, or just a fellow friend who truly knows what you are going through. Please, I welcome you to PM me. If need-be, I will give you my phone number and we can talk it through.

    This thread is dedicated to hernias, hernia recovery, hernia survivors, success stories.
    Last edited by ShoulderBrah; 04-06-2011 at 02:28 AM.
    Squat Goal - 365x1
    335x1 on 11/13/12
    225x12 on 2/7/13

    Bench Goal - 385x1
    365x1 on 1/08/14
    315x8 on 12/10/13

    Deads Goal - 565x1
    545x1 on 10/9/13
    405x12 on 11/8/12


    TOTAL = 1245 lbs
    GOAL = 1315 lbs

    HOW TO SQUAT: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=132884803
    HERNIA THREAD: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=133353003
    Reply With Quote

  2. #2
    ლ(╹◡╹ლ) ShoulderBrah's Avatar
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    It has been about 10 months since my surgery and I am starting to do ab work. All of my lower abs are so sore, that they feel injured, probably just because I have not done any ab work at all for the past 10 months, in addition to me cautioning myself and protecting my abs in daily activities. However, I told myself that I knew that I was going to have to go through pain in my lower abs wear the 5 inch incision was made in order to make it better and stronger until hopefully one day, I won't have pain in my lower abs like I do today when I work them out.

    This is not the pain of soreness of a regular ab workout I've done prior to surgery. I am very familiar with abs workouts recovering the next day to where sneezing hurts because i worked them good the day before. haha... the pain that I experience is pain in the whole area to where it "feels" like I reinjured the area. This is why it is so hard for me mentally to get back into ab workouts again. However, I know that it needs to happen in order to keep myself safe in other lifts since core means so much in lifting weights.
    Squat Goal - 365x1
    335x1 on 11/13/12
    225x12 on 2/7/13

    Bench Goal - 385x1
    365x1 on 1/08/14
    315x8 on 12/10/13

    Deads Goal - 565x1
    545x1 on 10/9/13
    405x12 on 11/8/12


    TOTAL = 1245 lbs
    GOAL = 1315 lbs

    HOW TO SQUAT: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=132884803
    HERNIA THREAD: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=133353003
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  3. #3
    Registered User houser31's Avatar
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    Surgery

    Had my surgery yesterday... It went pretty well... I was walking around alil but until the hospital anesthesia wore off.. Then I was couched mostly unless bathroom time... Thanks for the info.. My hernia was a small one and hoping to return to work with out lifting of course... Plus I just had knee arthroscopy last weds also...
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  4. #4
    PEANUT BUTTER FIEND TZMarkie's Avatar
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    Props to ShoulderBrah for his wealth of information.

    I went through several injuries last year around May, and have effectively been OUT of the gym ever since. (until last night that is )
    I have a shoulder impingement which still needs operating on, but it won't be happening any time soon. Guess I'll just have to work around it as best I can.

    But lo and behold, the last problem was a double inguinal hernia that I suffered in November.

    I won't give you all the details, but my experience went from diagnosis on a Friday, to surgery the following Tuesday, which was December 6th. Yeah, it was that quick.

    A few notes I might add to the OP that may also help others here...........
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    There are many ways you can sustain this type of injury, and weightlifting just happens to be the one everyone points to.
    In my case, it was NOT the reason. These can happen from a severe cough, merely straining on the toilet, even a freak twist or movement, and in fact alot of ways.

    I told my doctor that my father had actually had this problem well over 25 years ago, and had surgery twice in fact. (I later learned that my brother was actually born with a double hernia like this also, and they performed surgery on him when he got to be just a few months old)
    My doctor basically told me after hearing these, that "It seems like this is a problem you were just destined to have to deal with sooner or later". After I told him I wasn't a big "squatter" when lifting, this made him believe that even further.
    He eventually told me "Well, these hernias aren't really classified as HEREDITARY, but certain families DO* seem to be more predisposed to them". Essentially, I drew the short straw and had a problem I was just destined to have. Having a weaker abdominal wall just seems to be in my family. Oh well...

    They used the "mesh" to reinforce my hernia repairs, on both sides. If you have a choice, you might try and opt for the mesh also. My doctor said that seems to be the one that should have me (and other lifters) lifting again no problem.
    He did say that the mesh is pretty much the most reccomended and used way now, but in some circumstances, they use the older methods.

    The first 2 days were just terrible. Far worse than anyone can imagine. I heard all the stories, was told "its no big deal" etc. etc. In my case, I remember being on the verge of passing out from the pain, many times the first night, and eating the heavy pain killers all day and night for most of the first week. They later attributed my "severe almost unbearable pain" to a possible adverse reaction to something they may have gave me while operating, but no one can say for sure.

    Scars - Well, theres really only a 2-inch scar, on both sides of my lower abdomen. It more or less looks like 2 little thin horizontal slits. It really isn't nearly as bad as I thought it would look.
    You can feel the scar tissue underneath, but its nothing that won't dissipate slowly.

    Discoloration - For almost 2 weeks, I was black and blue ALL OVER "down there". Yes, as gross as it sounds, your sacs get extremely swollen and tender. Then, slowly your normal color tends to come back.

    I also had another nerve problem, that many have -- I mentioned this to my doctor, and he told me alot of people have it, but not all cases. The inside of my left leg (as it approaches my crotch) is extremely sensitive. The doctor explained that sometimes when doing a surgery like this, they have to move a few things to do the necessary repair, and I'm guessing they moved some nerves to the side while operating. This has caused me to be "hypersensitive" along the inside of my leg. Doctor said that its a fairly common occurrence, but not everyone has this problem. He has assured me this will go away in a few weeks, and it appears to be getting better slowly.

    Mentally - Like the OP said, its a tough thing mentally. You tend to shy away from any movements that may cause a bit of pain, and "baby" yourself. Coughing and sneezing are particularly tough, and even laughing is terribly brutal at first. No fear though, as this passes too, and you get better.
    After 7-8 months of not lifting, I went from being 5'7 and 200 pounds and hard as a rock, to 5'7 and 165 pounds. YIKES! - But this was due to correcting some poor eating, and not lifting. Essentially I trimmed off a little fat I wanted to drop, then all the mass left after a few months too. The hernias just furthered the problems towards the tail end.

    I mentioned before that the first 2 days were almost unbearable, but I improved by leaps and bounds afterwards.

    Roughly one month after the operation, I am not 100%, but I am getting back to a more normal life of lifting a few things here and there. Carrying cases of water, soft drinks, typical groceries, these everyday things are all pretty much back to normal now.

    More later, and hope this helps


    TZM
    After 8 months of injuries/not lifting and double hernia surgery in December (and losing 30 pounds of mass).... training began once again in February!
    Damn its good to be back.

    My BIO FORGE log is now up - http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=145592731

    My SAN LAUNCH review - http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=144489011
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  5. #5
    ლ(╹◡╹ლ) ShoulderBrah's Avatar
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    Hey TZM... thanks for the story. I also ran into the leg issue. My leg felt a numbing sensation a few times breifly for the first few weeks. It eventually went away. I also had some strange pressure in multiple parts of my abdomen after the surgery.

    As for an update, I am happy to announce that as of Jan 1, 2012, I have entered the 1000 lb club. Below are my stats:

    Bench: 315x1 - Dec 22, 2011
    Squat: 235x1 - Dec 19, 2011
    Deads: 455x1 - Jan 1, 2012

    As you can see I am back to full strength and am MUCH stronger than before my hernia surgery. It has now been almost 17 months since surgery and I feel unstoppable. I have felt absolutely no pain in my surgery region on any of my lifts. I also have gotten back into AB routines doing jackknifes, crunches, dead turtle on the highways, and leg raises with no surgery related abdominal pain.
    Squat Goal - 365x1
    335x1 on 11/13/12
    225x12 on 2/7/13

    Bench Goal - 385x1
    365x1 on 1/08/14
    315x8 on 12/10/13

    Deads Goal - 565x1
    545x1 on 10/9/13
    405x12 on 11/8/12


    TOTAL = 1245 lbs
    GOAL = 1315 lbs

    HOW TO SQUAT: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=132884803
    HERNIA THREAD: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=133353003
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  6. #6
    Registered User caseycour's Avatar
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    I'm so glad I found this thread. I have determined that I have acquired my very own inguinal hernia. I had one as a kid on my right side and now after a year of lifting have slowly developed another on my left. This sucks. I have continued to lift with it and hope to have the surgery soon. I have a special hernia belt coming in a day or two to hopefully help slow the hernia's progression down as I lift right up until the procedure. It's nice to know what to expect following surgery as an adult, as I'd imagine it's nothing like when I was 10... so thanks for the info here.
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  7. #7
    ლ(╹◡╹ლ) ShoulderBrah's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by caseycour View Post
    I'm so glad I found this thread. I have determined that I have acquired my very own inguinal hernia. I had one as a kid on my right side and now after a year of lifting have slowly developed another on my left. This sucks. I have continued to lift with it and hope to have the surgery soon. I have a special hernia belt coming in a day or two to hopefully help slow the hernia's progression down as I lift right up until the procedure. It's nice to know what to expect following surgery as an adult, as I'd imagine it's nothing like when I was 10... so thanks for the info here.
    It's pretty common for the other side to go out if you've had an inguinal hernia on the one side. Fortunately, I haven't gotten one on the other side yet. I'm here if you need support.
    Squat Goal - 365x1
    335x1 on 11/13/12
    225x12 on 2/7/13

    Bench Goal - 385x1
    365x1 on 1/08/14
    315x8 on 12/10/13

    Deads Goal - 565x1
    545x1 on 10/9/13
    405x12 on 11/8/12


    TOTAL = 1245 lbs
    GOAL = 1315 lbs

    HOW TO SQUAT: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=132884803
    HERNIA THREAD: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=133353003
    Reply With Quote

  8. #8
    Registered User caseycour's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ShoulderBrah View Post
    It's pretty common for the other side to go out if you've had an inguinal hernia on the one side. Fortunately, I haven't gotten one on the other side yet. I'm here if you need support.
    in some other threads about this topic, I've seen people talk about using a belt when lifting heavy... to "hold everything in". What kind of belt are might they be referring to? just a regular lifting belt? or some other special kind of belt? also if I lift with the belt and feel no pain, should I be okay to lift that way for a little while?

    obviously these questions are better suited for my doctor... but for future reference i'd love to know what additional precautions I can take and what I can get away with prior to surgery short of discontinuing lifting all together.
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  9. #9
    ლ(╹◡╹ლ) ShoulderBrah's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by caseycour View Post
    in some other threads about this topic, I've seen people talk about using a belt when lifting heavy... to "hold everything in". What kind of belt are might they be referring to? just a regular lifting belt? or some other special kind of belt? also if I lift with the belt and feel no pain, should I be okay to lift that way for a little while?

    obviously these questions are better suited for my doctor... but for future reference i'd love to know what additional precautions I can take and what I can get away with prior to surgery short of discontinuing lifting all together.
    They are talking about a regular lifting belt that you'd see powerlifters squating, deadlifting, and benching with. Usually about 3-4 inches wide. They are primarily used to help support the lower back by creating more pressure in the core in order to make your body tight and full.

    However, for someone who has just recently came from a hernia injury, gotten surgery, or maybe if a hernia is starting to come, lifting belts are not safe and not a smart idea. Reason being is, the belt will create pressure within the core of your body, possibly pushing the intestine downward (only place for it to go) though the intestinal wall and toward the ball sack directly.

    In your case, since you are looking for a temporary way to train before surgery, I would not recommend a lifting belt because this will directly create pressure and possibly make your hernia worse by forcing the intestine further out of your intestinal wall which would create a bigger hole and make the injury more severe. For this, I would strongly advise any type of lifting belt before and even afterwards.

    To be honest, if you are using correct form and training as a beginner or intermediate, a belt is not necessary in my opinion.
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  10. #10
    Head like orange Zwicker's Avatar
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    Rep'd for thread

    I'm 90% sure I have one, or have one soon developing. I was born with one as well.

    Annoying as fack. I never really feel PAIN, but I constantly feel pulling sensations when doing basically anything. I also had swollen bollocks a couple weeks ago... They were literally like handfuls. The doc said he didnt feel what he was "supposed to" feel to indicate a hernia, but that all signs pointed towards it. I have a scan booked in two weeks. I've still been lifting without pain, but that pulling sensation shows up throughout the day consistently.

    Good night sweet gains.
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  11. #11
    Registered User adiadi's Avatar
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    had surgery on my left inguinal hernia on december 29th. my experience doesn't sound nearly as bad as most of yours. I couldn't move for the first two days, but after day 2 I switched off of percocet and just got on advil (mostly because I didn't wanna fuk with pain killers anymore). I went out for New Years and was able to be on my feet most of the time with not too much pain.
    the doc told me not to lift for 4 weeks, so i decided that February 1st (a week ago) was a good starting point. I've been doing about 80% of my max on most lifts without any pain so far.. and it's been a week. I'm curious as to why I've recovered so much more quickly than you guys, and if I should slow down at all? I have about a 2 inch incision on my left side, and the doc considered it a "small to medium sized hernia".
    Let me know what you guys think!
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    ლ(╹◡╹ლ) ShoulderBrah's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by adiadi View Post
    had surgery on my left inguinal hernia on december 29th. my experience doesn't sound nearly as bad as most of yours. I couldn't move for the first two days, but after day 2 I switched off of percocet and just got on advil (mostly because I didn't wanna fuk with pain killers anymore). I went out for New Years and was able to be on my feet most of the time with not too much pain.
    the doc told me not to lift for 4 weeks, so i decided that February 1st (a week ago) was a good starting point. I've been doing about 80% of my max on most lifts without any pain so far.. and it's been a week. I'm curious as to why I've recovered so much more quickly than you guys, and if I should slow down at all? I have about a 2 inch incision on my left side, and the doc considered it a "small to medium sized hernia".
    Let me know what you guys think!
    Everyone is different. I have a 5 inch scar on my left side. I had nore abdominal tissue cut through in order to repair the hernia. It took a long time for me to recover because I chose to go slow. I didn't think it was worth reinjuring it. It was also a mental thing.

    When you do preacher curls, standing shoulder press, leg extensions, Incline DB bench press, and tricep press down, do you feel any pressure in your hernia repair spot? just wondering.
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    Originally Posted by Zwicker View Post
    Rep'd for thread

    I'm 90% sure I have one, or have one soon developing. I was born with one as well.

    Annoying as fack. I never really feel PAIN, but I constantly feel pulling sensations when doing basically anything. I also had swollen bollocks a couple weeks ago... They were literally like handfuls. The doc said he didnt feel what he was "supposed to" feel to indicate a hernia, but that all signs pointed towards it. I have a scan booked in two weeks. I've still been lifting without pain, but that pulling sensation shows up throughout the day consistently.

    Good night sweet gains.
    Good night sweet gains for your legs. =( I'm finally becoming to get where I was at for deads and squats as I was before the incident. However, my upper body went insane!! No halting progess there thats for sure@!

    As for your doctor... go to another one. In fact, my hernia did not produce a bump. Get other opinions. Def sounds like one.
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    Deads Goal - 565x1
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    405x12 on 11/8/12


    TOTAL = 1245 lbs
    GOAL = 1315 lbs

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  14. #14
    PEANUT BUTTER FIEND TZMarkie's Avatar
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    Just a quick update.........................

    As mentioned above, my surgery was December 6th.
    On February the 2nd, I had my final visit to my doctor. He basically gave me a clean bill of health, and said I was about 99% healed. NO MORE OFFICE VISITS!!!!

    For the record, he did say that most hernias and surgeries of this nature are pretty well healed (about as well as they will ever be - as he put it) around 7-8 weeks.

    I started lifting again on January 9th, if thats what you want to call it. I essentially did a few exercises, tried to get an extremely light feel for lifting again, and some basic thresholds for what I could still do, and the weights I could "handle".

    My progress has been swift..... going up X2 or even X3 on many exercises. In many ways, I am still behind what I was doing before, but my body has responded nicely in only a few short weeks.
    The compliments have been coming in when I am out and about, already.
    Remember, I went for almost 8-9 months without training. I was tender, and fragile, weak if you will. That length of time was also caused by shoulder problems, which I still have.

    Zwicker- I do have some advice, but I suggest you discuss it with your doctor, when and if you have your surgery.
    You will still be able to do some upper body work,(if you in fact have hernia surgery) although very limited at first. You might discuss doing "bodyweight squats" with your doctor. Try for a good hard squeeze on them. Hell, I might even see if the doctor would let me try a few sets of these a couple days a week, even 10-12 days or so after surgery.
    This is something that I did NOT do. But, considering I had basically lost all of my mass from not lifting for months, I didn't have anything there to try and preserve, if you get my drift.
    Where there is a will, there is a way and I believe I could have gotten away with doing some of these bodyweight squats as little as 10 days after surgery, if I had my mind to it.

    I do agree with OP ShoulderBrah, everyone is different. Each persons hernia is different, and recovery will be also.


    Some other things my doctor told me that may be of interest -
    Because of the difference in guys/girls, guys tend to get hernias much more often, and a woman with a hernia is rare comparatively.
    Women are just "designed" differently down there, and stronger, more "prepared and able" for pregnancy and childbirth.
    My Dr. mentioned that when males are born, the scrotum descends down, and most ALL males are just naturally weaker there, in and around surrounding tissue. That would also explain a fairly large number of males born with hernias.

    Personally, I am also just starting a bit of ab work. I was very leery of that, but he mentioned thats largely an unneccessary fear.
    He gave me the clearance to do whatever I wish, only that I let pain be my guide, and "if it hurts, then stop it".

    Another note he mentioned - That most hernias ARE NOT caused by weightlifting, as many think. That mostly the lifting aggravates* the pre-existing condition, and exacerbates what is most likely an already existing hernia or slight tear causing it to expand. (and ultimately rear its head and get noticeable)

    I too, like ShoulderBrah was very careful at first. I am still only squatting light weights with dumbells, but my legs are responding great.
    I have really tried to focus more on squeezing and the contraction this go around, and I am getting a good workout and noticeable results from much lighter weight.


    If I could give anyone any advice on this, its to ask your doctor questions. Don't be timid, it is YOUR body, and you deserve to know whats going on. You are paying for this operation after all.
    Most good doctors will take the time to explain things, but you often have to question them. And don't be afraid to get a second opinion.
    A quick web search should point you to a good, well respected doctor in your area.


    If anyone has any other questions, feel free to PM me, or ask here and I will do the best I can.


    TZM
    Last edited by TZMarkie; 02-09-2012 at 02:36 AM.
    After 8 months of injuries/not lifting and double hernia surgery in December (and losing 30 pounds of mass).... training began once again in February!
    Damn its good to be back.

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  15. #15
    Chasing youth cryoung's Avatar
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    Great stuff in this post. Thanks to everyone that has contributed, it gives me a much better idea of what to expect. My surgery for a double inguinal is mid March and my frustration is with trying to continue training up to my surgery. I've dropped all leg and core specific work and changed up to upper body as well as dropping the weight for each exercise way down. I am still allowed to run so I'm able to keep the cardio going.

    I feel like I've been on a good roll and don't want to lose that momentum although I do recognize it needs to be done or there will be no gains and things will get worse. As luck would have it, I also need to have foot surgery a few weeks after my hernia's. I have a bone spur that I've neglected so I now need to have a joint replaced just behind my big toe. Looks like lots of couch time coming up in March and April for me.

    One last note about pain and pain killers. My doctor mentioned (and my wife agrees) about a local pain killer that is basically a "ball"with Lydocaine or Markaine (spelling?) and is connected by a tube that goes directly to the surgery site. Sounds like an interesting idea and other than having to carry these two balls around with me for 3-4 days, seems like it would be a good way to kill the pain.

    Thanks again and keep on sharing ideas

    Chuck
    The pain is short term. The benefits are long term.

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    Had a bilateral inguinal hernia repair done laparoscopically on Jan 24, 2012.

    Week 1: pain meds helped a lot. Most discomfort came from bloating, and GI problems. slept in recliner first 3 days, then in bed.
    Week 2: switched to tylenol extra strength, started walking, driving, shopping, etc...
    Week 3: no more pain meds; still had soreness in the lower abs area from sleeping on my belly.
    Week 4: resumed sexual activity....was a little painful but not a big deal. Still having pain on the right side when sneezing, coughing, blowing nose (maybe from the internal staples being stretched). A little worried about this but we shall see...

    I don't plan on going to the gym before week 10. I had an open bilateral inguinal hernia repair when I was a newborn, so I'm playing it extra conservative. I'm 5'11 and 165lbs (10% body fat) and here are my weights before the surgery (3 sets of 5 reps), hopefully I'll get back there:

    Deadlift: 275 lbs
    Squat: 225 lbs
    Bench Press: 195 lbs
    Row: 165 lbs
    Military Press: 135 lbs
    Last edited by BabelFish; 02-18-2012 at 08:39 AM.
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    Going for scans tomorrow to see in fact have a inguinal hernia - fingers crossed no.
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    Thumbs down

    Hernia confirmed - haven't seen surgeon yet but will be sometime next week.
    Going to hold out until April to have anything done.

    Not looking forward to the 6 - 7 months to back to full strength lifts etc..

    BUT will do the right thing, pretty sure i caused the hernia after doing too much too soon after having my appendix out in Dec '11..... lessons learned.

    Will be re-visiting this thread.
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    ლ(╹◡╹ლ) ShoulderBrah's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by wallb View Post
    Hernia confirmed - haven't seen surgeon yet but will be sometime next week.
    Going to hold out until April to have anything done.

    Not looking forward to the 6 - 7 months to back to full strength lifts etc..

    BUT will do the right thing, pretty sure i caused the hernia after doing too much too soon after having my appendix out in Dec '11..... lessons learned.

    Will be re-visiting this thread.
    I'm sorry to hear that my friend. However, I have felt that this injury has humbled me somewhat. Just take it easy, slow, and you'll be fine.
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  20. #20
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    Originally Posted by ShoulderBrah View Post
    I'm sorry to hear that my friend. However, I have felt that this injury has humbled me somewhat. Just take it easy, slow, and you'll be fine.
    Cheers Brah

    Repped.
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  21. #21
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    Originally Posted by BabelFish View Post
    Had a bilateral inguinal hernia repair done laparoscopically on Jan 24, 2012.

    Week 1: pain meds helped a lot. Most discomfort came from bloating, and GI problems. slept in recliner first 3 days, then in bed.
    Week 2: switched to tylenol extra strength, started walking, driving, shopping, etc...
    Week 3: no more pain meds; still had soreness in the lower abs area from sleeping on my belly.
    Week 4: resumed sexual activity....was a little painful but not a big deal. Still having pain on the right side when sneezing, coughing, blowing nose (maybe from the internal staples being stretched). A little worried about this but we shall see...

    I don't plan on going to the gym before week 10. I had an open bilateral inguinal hernia repair when I was a newborn, so I'm playing it extra conservative. I'm 5'11 and 165lbs (10% body fat) and here are my weights before the surgery (3 sets of 5 reps), hopefully I'll get back there:

    Deadlift: 275 lbs
    Squat: 225 lbs
    Bench Press: 195 lbs
    Row: 165 lbs
    Military Press: 135 lbs
    Week 5: pain on lower right side of abs continues, waking me up in the middle of the night.
    Week 6: acute pain on lower right side of abs, reproduced when stretching, sneezing, coughing, straining. Contacted surgeon and he said I might have a nerve entrapment (from staples or scar tissue). Recommended prescription strength NSAID with hot compresses over the pain area. Will follow this regimen for two weeks and report back.
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  22. #22
    PEANUT BUTTER FIEND TZMarkie's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by wallb View Post
    Hernia confirmed - haven't seen surgeon yet but will be sometime next week.
    Going to hold out until April to have anything done.

    Not looking forward to the 6 - 7 months to back to full strength lifts etc..

    BUT will do the right thing, pretty sure i caused the hernia after doing too much too soon after having my appendix out in Dec '11..... lessons learned.

    Will be re-visiting this thread.

    More than likely, it was something you would have to deal with sooner or later, and I doubt you did it trying to do to much too soon before so I wouldn't blame yourself. Of course, you will most likely never know, but I damn sure wouldn't beat yourself up about it.
    Judging from what my Dr. told me, most hernias are merely aggravated from previous problems or injuries and were destined to happen sooner or later.

    I also wouldn't think of this as a 7 month punishment from lifting.
    Most of these things are healed at the 7-8 week mark, and you may even surprise yourself with doing very light, basic things in only a few weeks.
    Maybe I should stress VERY LIGHT!
    My doctor told me I could resume some light things only a few weeks after surgery, about 4 weeks after if I remember correctly. Then about 8 weeks after he pretty much gave me the green light saying "let pain be your guide and if it hurts then stop".

    In my case, I hadn't touched a weight in 7 months +, but that was for a multitude of reasons, and the hernia was only towards the end of that period.

    When I resumed, I started doing light curls, dumbbell benching, bodyweight squats and other very, very light work. Mostly I was using 5 lb plates and 10-15 pound dumbbells for everything.
    This may sound ridiculously light for some, and I understand that, but essentially I had to start from scratch all over again, and not just because of the hernia operation. I simply had went far too long without lifting anything.

    My strength came back pretty quickly though, as noted in my posts above.
    I suppose I learned that there IS** such a thing as muscle memory, at least in my case. So if you have a good foundation of strength at this point, in my opinion you won't lose as much as you may think.

    I think within 5 weeks of surgery you will be doing more than you realize, although I will caution the first 2-3 days after surgery are dark times my friend. It will seem like you will never lift again, but you will improve tremendously, and damn quickly too.

    It was odd in my case.......... almost as if I could feel myself growing stronger each day.
    I assume thats because I was in decent shape before all this ever started, and it just came back quickly for me.

    I am sure ShoulderBrah will agree, and anyone else who has went through this, but I believe a good mental attitude will help. It was brutal the first few days for me, but soon after it got much better.
    My case seemed to be worse than anyone I had talked to though, judging from their descriptions and experiences.
    Most all of them only had one side done though, and I had both done simultaneously, maybe that had alot to do with it.

    BTW- I opted to get it done as soon as I could, and that was a masterstroke! Putting it off would have helped me in absolutely NO WAY, and getting it done and behind me asap was the best move I could have made.
    If you get it done soon, by summers end you will be thanking yourself that you did!


    This is only my 2 cents, but hope it helps.


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    Registered User fisch28's Avatar
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    Hi, I've had an inguinal hernia for around 9 months now with no noticeable signs really of it getting larger. I did also have one on the same side when I was 10 years old.

    Anyway I see plenty of information on recover time and what lifts are safe to ease into after surgery, BUT not much about the safety of exercises while waiting for the surgery.

    I am still waiting what could possibly be another 6 months until surgery and have gotten seriously out of shape from not doing any workouts during the past 9 months.

    So I'm wondering if what types of exercises would be safe to do with an inguinal hernia? This week I began doing jump rope and few plyometric type exercises just to burn off some of this fat I've gained. Also doing push-ups but only from the knees since that's what I was advised. With an inguinal hernia, and surgery months away, what type of lifts would you do?
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    ლ(╹◡╹ლ) ShoulderBrah's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by fisch28 View Post
    Hi, I've had an inguinal hernia for around 9 months now with no noticeable signs really of it getting larger. I did also have one on the same side when I was 10 years old.

    Anyway I see plenty of information on recover time and what lifts are safe to ease into after surgery, BUT not much about the safety of exercises while waiting for the surgery.

    I am still waiting what could possibly be another 6 months until surgery and have gotten seriously out of shape from not doing any workouts during the past 9 months.

    So I'm wondering if what types of exercises would be safe to do with an inguinal hernia? This week I began doing jump rope and few plyometric type exercises just to burn off some of this fat I've gained. Also doing push-ups but only from the knees since that's what I was advised. With an inguinal hernia, and surgery months away, what type of lifts would you do?
    The more you wait and the worse it gets, the more severe the surgery and the more time you need to wait for healing.

    With that said, from the day I created the hernia to the day I had surgery was 2 months time. During that time, I was deadlifting 315x8, benching 245x1 and doing all of my other exercises full strength and full effort. I didn't stop at all. However, I would suggest not doing that because i was lucky i didnt make my hernia very severe or even get another one.

    Why are you waiting so long? Do you live In Canada or England?
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    Originally Posted by adiadi View Post
    had surgery on my left inguinal hernia on december 29th. my experience doesn't sound nearly as bad as most of yours. I couldn't move for the first two days, but after day 2 I switched off of percocet and just got on advil (mostly because I didn't wanna fuk with pain killers anymore). I went out for New Years and was able to be on my feet most of the time with not too much pain.
    the doc told me not to lift for 4 weeks, so i decided that February 1st (a week ago) was a good starting point. I've been doing about 80% of my max on most lifts without any pain so far.. and it's been a week. I'm curious as to why I've recovered so much more quickly than you guys, and if I should slow down at all? I have about a 2 inch incision on my left side, and the doc considered it a "small to medium sized hernia".
    have you begun doing ab work yet? my situation seems very similar to yours. surgery on Jan 31st, back in the gym 3 weeks later... though i've yet to resume squats or deadlifts. i can do a few situps without pain but then i feel a dull ache in the incisional area.
    Let me know what you guys think!
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    Yeah, fortunately I have noticed any definite signs of it getting worse but of coarse it's not getting any better. But that all totally makes sense. I was suppose to get it done way back in September but there was a miscommunication on the exact date and I ended up missing it. I'm on a free program in San Francisco that I qualified for to get the surgery done and I'm just assuming I don't get priority or anything. I don't have insurance so this program was my only option really. I need to go in this week to get a definite date for the next scheduled surgery though.

    And ok, that's good to know. Yeah I've just been doing body weight exercises and stopped heavy lifting. I'm thinking of doing light weights tho, high rep as I would imagine it being easier on the area. I'm not very sure how bad mine is though and I've actually had suspision of having an inguinal hernia developing on the other side so I think I should get that checked too. Thankyou for the reply
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    So my tips for those about to go through this... for the record I discovered my hernia in mid January. I had surgery on Jan. 31st.

    1) Do not put surgery off. This has been a key part of my recovery speed and THE sole reason I didn't lose much time in the gym. My incision is less than 2 inches wide. It was not a severe hernia because I didn't let it become one.

    2) Days 1-3 suck. Painful as ****. Take every pain killer they'll give you. Don't move unless absolutely necessary. Try to pee as often as you can, cause if your bladder gets full, it will hurt like ****.

    3) Days 3-7. You're home at this point and you need to be moving as much as possible. Get up every hour or so and walk across your home. Avoid staying in one position too long. This makes things very stiff and painful when you do move.

    3.1) Bowels movements will suck at this point. Pain meds will have you backed up and dry and you can't really "push" anything out. On your way home from surgery, stop at a pharmacy and pick up some glycerine suppositories and an enema. Stick one up your ass as soon as you get home. Drink a bunch of water. If nothing happens after 2 hours, repeat. If you start feeling pressure but can't make it happen... break out that enema and end this. It didn't get that far for me, but you'll want to prepare for the worst with this.

    4) Days 7-21. Resume normal everyday activity. Go back to work if not a labor intensive job and just get back to normal. Again, moving around a bunch is important here. Active recovery is crucial

    5) Days 21-35. At some point in this window, you'll probably be able to get back to lifting. I was doing pullups and pushups 2 weeks after surgery and resumed normal upper body work at 23 days after. Your mileage may vary, but don't be afraid to try some things and test the waters.

    6) Days 35-... Well, that's where I am so I don't have much for you here. My upper body work is back to pre-hernia levels. I have yet to resume squats or deadlifts (though I can body weight squat with no issues). I did about 6 situps today before feeling a little tightness in the surgical area. I feel really good about that and will try to start easing back into ab work, squats and deadlifts over the coming weeks.

    If you take anything from this post at all, let it be my first tip. DO NOT DELAY THE PROCEDURE. The quicker you get it done, the quicker you'll be back. Also, do your research. Get a surgeon with some experience. Middle aged men and up are the ideal surgeons.
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  28. #28
    Chasing youth cryoung's Avatar
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    I'm just starting day 4 post surgery for a bilateral Inguinal operation.

    For anyone using the On Q pain pump, ask ahead of time how often they clog and what needs to be done. Yesterday one of the tubes came out so I decided to remove the other since we were in day 3. In looking at the ball, it looked like no medication was dispensed at all. It was full. Then we did something dumb....our curious side decided it would be interesting to see what's inside the ball....here's a question: What happens when something under pressure is punctured? Yup, it blew up all over our kitchen. So we confirmed the ball was full but no longer have any evidence that it is.....

    So, taking that into account, it looks like I went through the first 3 days with no pain meds other than 4 Norcor pills over that entire period. The pain was intense and I would still suggest the pump to anyone having the surgery as I think it would have helped with my pain had it been working.

    I was getting up and walking every day around the house, outdoors and also stairs. I'm certain the moving around helped even though it hurt.

    I am still pretty swollen in the area and my balls are HUGE....a little black and blue but HUGE....The incision sites look pretty good. They are larger than I expected - around 5 inches on each side. The sites oozed a bit after the surgery but that was to be expected.

    I'm going to attempt a shower today. Hopefully that goes well.

    Overall, I think the worst of it is over for me....I'm moving around pretty good and although I do feel pain, it's nothing like the pain the first 3 days.
    The pain is short term. The benefits are long term.

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    Registered User Sag1e's Avatar
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    Thanks for the information, I'm pretty scared I have one too. I have a pain in my lower abs section and sometimes in the groin and balls for 3-4 weeks already. went to the doctor a week ago and he said he doesn't think it's an hernia but I'm going this week to do an ultrasound. did you guys have the same symptoms? It started in the left testicle first then after a week went to the groin, and then after 5 days or so it went to the lower abs.
    and how can I do a little "home check" to see if it's hernia?
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    ლ(╹◡╹ლ) ShoulderBrah's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Sag1e View Post
    Thanks for the information, I'm pretty scared I have one too. I have a pain in my lower abs section and sometimes in the groin and balls for 3-4 weeks already. went to the doctor a week ago and he said he doesn't think it's an hernia but I'm going this week to do an ultrasound. did you guys have the same symptoms? It started in the left testicle first then after a week went to the groin, and then after 5 days or so it went to the lower abs.
    and how can I do a little "home check" to see if it's hernia?
    There really isnt a "home-check" that I know of. The way mine started out was a groin pain. Then it was the left pubic area.
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