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  1. #1
    Registered User English Stu's Avatar
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    Default Post op advice needed after Hernia repair

    A week ago I had a keyhole inguinal hernia repair and would appreciate any advice, or suitable website for info, on a regime to return to hiking fitness. I will be talking to my doctor but he might just shake his head when I say I want to backpack a few hundred miles.
    I am 67 usually fit weigh 147lbs. Ex Marathoner,Triathlete and 1000mls on the AT and would like to return sometime. I already go light weight with a base weight of 13lb, I could get that down to 11lb if I return to the Tarp and ditch the Teva camp shoes

  2. #2
    Registered User Hikes in Rain's Avatar
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    Take it slowly at first. I like to run to stay in shape, but when I tried it a bit too soon, I could feel things were still "loose" in there. Best way I can describe it. The mesh they use to seal you up needs to be assimilated into your muscle system before you try anything too strenuous. If your experience is anything like mine, the pain has already shown you that! After a little while (three or four weeks? My memory is a bit hazy on time), your doctor will clear you for strenuous activity, and after that, recovery time is a matter of pain tolerance as the scar tissue stretches and breaks up. Just grit your teeth and go for it after that. With your background, you should recover quickly.

    But slowly at first, to let it heal. Listen to what your surgeon says; after all, you're paying for an expert's opinion. Take his advice.

  3. #3
    AT 4000+, LT, FHT, ALT Blissful's Avatar
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    Any major sugery you need to give at least 6 weeks to heal. Even then it could be longer.







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  4. #4
    Registered User kayak karl's Avatar
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    concider getting advice from a professional in the Orthopaedics Sports Medicine & Rehabilitation field. they understand the mental need to get back at it
    I'm so confused, I'm not sure if I lost my horse or found a rope.

  5. #5
    Registered User English Stu's Avatar
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    Thanks guys
    To help any others, so far from various web sources I get ;
    Ist week rest
    wks 2-4 short walks and some stretching
    wks 4-6 slowly regain strength.Cycling and swimming useful i.e less load bearing
    9 weeks for scar hardening to go.
    No serious exercise for 4 months,stop anytime if any pain.
    I see my doctor tomorrow I will see what they say.

  6. #6
    Registered User Water Rat's Avatar
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    A week after your surgery, you should be cleared for normal walking. No heavy lifting for 2-4 weeks after inguinal hernia surgery. I'll bet your doctor told you to start walking 24-48 hrs after the surgery. Walking is very important for the healing process. Just do not overdo it. I would start with short, flat walks. Take it easy and listen to your body. If something doesn't feel right, you will know you are trying to do too much. If you have outright pain, then either shorten the distance, or call your doctor.

    I had an emergency inguinal hernia repair (yes, gals get them too!). The good thing was I felt immediately better after the surgery. The bad thing was I wanted to do too much right away. Take it slow and you will get back to normal hiking so much faster.

    Good luck with your hike!

  7. #7
    Registered User Lyle's Avatar
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    I didn't have inguinal hernia surgery, but had an umbilical hernia repair. The doctor originally said 6 weeks of no strenuous activity, turned into 8 weeks, then only as tolerated. This extension was due to being a Paramedic and doing fairly heavy (sometimes REAL heavy) lifting. I was concerned for quite some time because of persistent discharge from the surgical incision, but when the doctor was questioned, his best advice was on how to clean it out of my navel efficiently, he was not at all concerned about the continuing discharge. It did eventually stop, and all is perfectly well now, no concerns at all, but it did take about a full year to get to what I considered 100%.

    I would agree with most others, and take it easy at first, doesn't mean no exercise, but I would not ignore your pain just because your doctor cleared you. Pain is there for a reason. With your background, you are probably good at ignoring a certain level of pain, and that's good, but I would guard against overdoing it until you honestly feel you are 100%. As the doc pointed out to me, if he needs to go back in for another repair because you tear something, the results are typically less satisfactory and takes longer.

    Good luck.

  8. #8

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    I was told not to lift anything heavy for 6-8 weeks...ugh!


    ...a funny observation for me is...what use to be a round shallow naval (innie) is now a square deep cavernous abyss one, it just looks funny to me LOL. I'll spare ya'll the pictures...Maybe...I'm just not there yet

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by English Stu View Post
    A week ago I had a keyhole inguinal hernia repair and would appreciate any advice, or suitable website for info, on a regime to return to hiking fitness. I will be talking to my doctor but he might just shake his head when I say I want to backpack a few hundred miles.
    I am 67 usually fit weigh 147lbs. Ex Marathoner,Triathlete and 1000mls on the AT and would like to return sometime. I already go light weight with a base weight of 13lb, I could get that down to 11lb if I return to the Tarp and ditch the Teva camp shoes
    I guess everyone is different. I had the same surgery about 10 years ago. I took it easy for the first two weeks, then resumed normal activity. I avoided lifting really heavy objects, but started back walking. I don't remember exactly, but it was probably six weeks before I was wearing a back pack.

    My advice is to be sensitive to your body. If something causes pain, avoid it. If not, press on.
    Shutterbug

  10. #10
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    Default Post op advice needed after Hernia repair

    This is a pretty old thread. I think I may be facing this inguinal hernia surgery, and wondering how some of you folks that had this years ago are doing now. There are some pretty scary youtubes out there regarding these mesh implants.
    I haven't even seen my doc yet, but I'm pretty sure he’s gonna tell me this is what I have. Not sure if there will be other surgical options besides the mesh. I know some folks just wear these belts and live with it. I have the belt now and gonna try hiking with it for the first time maybe tomorrow. I don't see the doc for 2 more weeks...

  11. #11
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    Default Post op advice needed after Hernia repair

    I had 2 umbilical hernias repaired with mesh last February. I had discomfort from the mesh for about 6 months after the surgery. I was worried that I was just going to have to live with it, but it has gone away now.
    You can walk in another person's shoes, but only with your feet

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by devoidapop View Post
    I had 2 umbilical hernias repaired with mesh last February. I had discomfort from the mesh for about 6 months after the surgery. I was worried that I was just going to have to live with it, but it has gone away now.
    Have you done any strenuous hiking / backpacking since?

  13. #13

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    My advice: (1) what ever you lift (following you MD's authorization), use your knees, that is, keep your back straight and bend your knees, using your upper leg muscles. And (2) avoid being constipated. Easier said then done when hiking, though.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by stephanD View Post
    My advice: (1) what ever you lift (following you MD's authorization), use your knees, that is, keep your back straight and bend your knees, using your upper leg muscles. And (2) avoid being constipated. Easier said then done when hiking, though.
    Yes, I always lift that way, anyway. I don't know about diet. Stay away from Mtn. House type stuff I guess...

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by jefals View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by devoidapop View Post
    I had 2 umbilical hernias repaired with mesh last February. I had discomfort from the mesh for about 6 months after the surgery. I was worried that I was just going to have to live with it, but it has gone away now.
    Have you done any strenuous hiking / backpacking since?
    I did an overnight trip to Hump Mountain about a month and a half after the surgery. That was way too soon. I was winded and extremely sore. I took about 3 months off hiking after that. When I got back to it in the summer I was fine.
    You can walk in another person's shoes, but only with your feet

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by devoidapop View Post
    I did an overnight trip to Hump Mountain about a month and a half after the surgery. That was way too soon. I was winded and extremely sore. I took about 3 months off hiking after that. When I got back to it in the summer I was fine.
    Ok. Thanks for the info...

  17. #17
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    It was a bright and sunny day. Somewhere in the middle of Franconia Ridge. The old guy was in some pain. His hernia wound from his surgery 6 months earlier had started to open. He was not bleeding but it was bulging and hurt like hell. I was able to help him with the goofy wide strap with a pad I had made to combat a rubbing back pack issue. Me and his wife secured this wide belt around his middle tight enough so he could at least walk out of there. So if you go hiking you should bring along, just in case, some sort of strap that is wide enough and fits so you won't end up walking on your entrails.

  18. #18
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    Default Another Option.

    Quote Originally Posted by jefals View Post
    I think I may be facing this inguinal hernia surgery, and wondering how some of you folks that had this years ago are doing now. There are some pretty scary youtubes out there regarding these mesh implants.
    US Senator Rand Paul announced in January that he was going to Canada for hernia repair surgery. The hospital is called Shouldice and hernia repairs are all they do. The only time they work with "mesh" is to remove it! The success rate of their work speaks for itself. I first heard of Shouldice when a logger who was working for me went there for a hernia repair. He was back on the job in less than two weeks.
    I know where I would go if I had a hernia and the repair would not involve mesh.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slumgum View Post
    US Senator Rand Paul announced in January that he was going to Canada for hernia repair surgery. The hospital is called Shouldice and hernia repairs are all they do. The only time they work with "mesh" is to remove it! The success rate of their work speaks for itself. I first heard of Shouldice when a logger who was working for me went there for a hernia repair. He was back on the job in less than two weeks.
    I know where I would go if I had a hernia and the repair would not involve mesh.
    Great! Good info. My first question is why on earth do you have to go to Canada for this?

  20. #20
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    Default Post op advice needed after Hernia repair

    I was given the choice between larthroscopic mesh repair or open surgery with suture repair. if you are concerned about surgical mesh, it's not the only option in the US.
    You can walk in another person's shoes, but only with your feet

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