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Incisional Hernia Repair and Tummy Tuck - Anyone?

(6 Posts)
Gail17 Mon 31-Aug-15 23:07:21

I have a large incisional hernia for which I have been referred to a surgeon to discuss surgery. My hernia is a result of a surgical site infection from my last op which involved an incision across my bikini line.

My last consultant told me he suspected that I might be at risk of infection due to the fact that my tummy overhangs following 2 pregnancies. Its hardly surprising that I am now worried this may happen again.

I have read of people having a tummy tuck at the same time as a hernia repair, but most of these seem to be in the US. Has anyone been offered this option here in the UK and if so what were your experiences of the operation and recovery period?

PhyllisDietrichson Tue 01-Sep-15 22:29:06

Yes I have about 11 years ago. I had lots of saggy skin forming two horrendous wrinkly curtains that I had to fold into knickers each morning following two huge babies and lack of elasticity in skin. No amount of sit ups could touch it as it was just deflated skin so was never going to go away. I also had a large umbilical hernia causing discomfort, doc took one look at it all and immediately recommended a tummy tuck on the NHS. They removed an awful lot of skin, repaired the hernia with stitches and left a hipbone to hipbone horizontal scar that's red and angry at first then fades to white. They also created a new belly button as the old one disappeared into the removed skin area.

Result it was a big improvement but not as good as the ones I'd seen online, they could have pulled it tighter and done the stitches much more carefully to avoid the little folds in the scar - dog's ears. And to my mind they just did not stretch it all enough and I still have a pretty ugly tummy with bulgy bits above the scar, but at least I'm not folding into pants anymore. I later had to have the hernia redone as it opened up again - turns out a mesh is a better way of holding it all back permanently. Perhaps discuss this. I had to arrange childcare for around 5 weeks as could not lifting anything not even a full kettle, it was so boring and hard work for all concerned, it's also quite sore for some time and really awful for a day or 4.

I wish I'd asked to see my appointed surgeon's surgery photos first to see his previous work. I know it's NHS but he's also a private surgeon too - should not be shoddy. I wish I'd also insisted that he did it himself and only agreed to sign if this was the case. I am sure it was the assistant surgeon who did my op. You don't automatically get the person you're appointed to doing the actual surgery or 'finish' - they've don't tell you this and a trainee's gotta learn somehow, but wish it wasn't on my tummy. My surgeon agreed to redo it at anytime admitting it was not 'the best surgery'. Anyway no regrets having it done, it stopped us having a third and final child though, so we go a dog instead who's lovely (!) I did not get it redone and have learned to live with my old tum quite happily now. My body's been through a lot and I'm proud of it. Hope this helps n good luck with your decision Gail.

Gail17 Tue 01-Sep-15 23:41:24

Thank you for reply Phyllis you have highlighted some points I hadn't thought about. Did you have 2 separate surgeons or did 1 surgeon carry out the hernia repair and the tummy tuck? I know what you mean about trainees carrying out the surgery, I do feel this was the case with my last surgery - hence the complications I am now facing! Did you have a mesh repair 2nd time around? I have read that mesh is better in terms of recurrence rates but I have already had issues with mesh erosion so this makes me nervous!

PhyllisDietrichson Sat 05-Sep-15 10:51:48

You get assigned a surgeon and their work is sometimes carried out by another doctor/registrar. Yes mesh repair second time, stitching is less reliable opening-up later wise. Have heard of some probs with mesh too. Didn't know about erosion sounds nasty. Chat things through with your surgeon and get a surgery / healing pathway that's good for you. Do ask to see the surgeon who will actually do the surgery's work. All the best.

coulsond12 Thu 08-Oct-15 18:07:37

One of my friend had this problem before and had a hernia repair at Shouldice hospital in Ontario( www.shouldice.com/ ). Since she had no op before, I’m not sure whether she had the infection you mentioned here. The surgery was successful and hernia was treated effectively. If op has left with this infection, the you it would be better to consult the concerned doctor and get suggestions on the treatments.

Severnmom Sun 12-Feb-17 12:58:27

Hi there i am also considering going to shouldice for a hernia and DR repair. I'd love to hear more about your friends experience.. I'm tring to do research before I deceide and I'm having a hard time getting feedback from previous patients.. if u can give her my email thay would be great it's severnmom@gmail.com

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