Groin (Inguinal) Hernia
This is the most common type of hernia. These hernias are common in men, but also occur frequently in women. They occur due to a congenital weakness in the groin related to descent of the testicle and ovary in the embryo and foetus.
There are two types, direct and indirect, and patients can have both. Indirect hernias are the most common. They relate to the sac of the internal lining of the abdominal cavity not “dissolving” during development after descent of the testicle to the scrotum. As a result of this the hole in the abdominal wall does not close and gradually weakens over time.
Direct hernias are seen in men who do lots of heavy straining. They are seen in older men who have done physical labour over many years. They are seen in young men who lift heavy loads at work (brickies, tilers, boiler makers, carpenters etc.) and at the gym. It is essentially irrelevant which type of hernia is present as the repair process is exactly the same with some minor technical variations. They are almost always able to be repaired with keyhole surgery as a day patient with very fast recovery and early return to normal activities.