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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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What causes pain and soreness around a lump at the hernia site?

Answered by
Dr. T Chandrakant

General Surgeon

Practicing since :1984

Answered : 16901 Questions

Posted on Wed, 22 Aug 2018 in Lump
Question: Hello, I am a healthy 40 year old, non-smoking female. I have a very small hernia about 2 or 3 inches above my belly button which was diagnosed by ultrasound several months ago. Back in November I was having constipation troubles and noticed what felt like a lump in that area which did not hurt and would sometimes feel very prominent and at other times I could hardly find it. The doctor sent me for another ultrasound and they diagnosed it as the same hernia which they said had not increased in size. I am quite certain they said it is 3mm. I notice it can feel more prominent when I am having constipation troubles. Two weeks ago I had a stomach virus that lasted about a week. I was unable to eat much and started to get very constipated. In the last week I have been eating fibre and trying to get my bowel movements back to normal. In the last couple of days I have had an easier time passing my bowel movements. About 3 hours ago I started to have pain in the middle to left side of what felt like my bowels. I was able to trace the pain to the lump which is where my hernia is. The lump was prominent again and sore to the touch. The pain/soreness lasted less than 10 minutes. I had a bowel movement about 5 minutes later which was not terribly soft but fairly easy to pass. The pain/soreness has since subsided quite a bit. The lump feels less prominent and when I touch it, it is no longer sore. Since my bowel movement 3 hours ago, I am feeling rather gassy and every once in a while I feel a little pain that comes and goes off to the left side. I have been advised that if my hernia gets sore or painful I need to see a doctor. I was told that if I continue to have pain and am unable to pass gas or have a bowel movement I should go to the ER. I have never had pain in that hernia area before and it scared me quite a bit. I tend to be a VERY anxious person so I have been worried about it since it happened. I am not sure if it hurt because my body was getting ready to have a bowel movement or if something is wrong. I have continued to pass gas since it happened and feel like I may need to have another bowel movement at some point today. I am just wondering if I should see the doctor this evening to have my hernia checked out. I would appreciate any advice. Thank you!
Answered by Dr. T Chandrakant 44 minutes later
Brief Answer:
You may need to go to the ER if the symptoms persist or new symptoms develop

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your query, an elucidate one.
Noted the history carefully and understood the concerns.

Since you have mentioned the hernia is of 3 mm the fat beneath can get entrapped and cause pain/soreness and bulge as 3 mm should not give obstruction to the colon or even a small intestine or else the hernia neck is large and can give rise to obstruction of the bowel if entrapped.

The pain radiates from the center to the left side giving the feeling of passing motion. The stomach flu, constipation can be due to colitis of some sort and hence cause the typical problem and the spasms/pain, thus cause tightening the sac to give soreness and enlargement as you have mentioned.

Hence it is wise to see a Doctor to get an actual clinical examination and may be added investigations of high-resolution ultrasonography; microanalysis of stool and blood to know the exact diagnosis to get a proper plan of management. Take rest till you see the Doctor.

Usually, there is nothing much to worry about 3 mm a hernia.
Since you have not mentioned about nausea, vomiting or bloating there may not be an emergency as such.

But if the pain and other symptoms are not tolerable or new symptoms as mentioned do develop then please go to the ER.

Further management depends upon the clinical findings and reports of investigations.
I hope this answers your query and helps in having a proper plan of management.
Please give feedback; ask further queries if you feel that there is a gap of communication.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee

The User accepted the expert's answer

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