A laparoscopic umbilical hernia repair is a common surgery done to repair bulging tissues, causing a bulge or pouch near the belly button, back into their place by reinforcing the defect in the abdominal wall. Dr Noorbhai does this surgery using minimally invasive surgical techniques as opposed to traditional open surgery when the hernia is relatively small.
Once your child is under general anaesthesia, a laparoscope, which is a narrow tube with a camera, will be inserted through a small incision in the lower abdomen allowing your surgeon to view the internal organs on a screen. Through other thin tubes, narrow tools are inserted to delicately push the bulging intestine back into place and use synthetic mesh to reinforce the abdominal wall. Finally, Dr Noorbhai will close the puncture-like incisions with absorbable stitches or surgical staples.
An umbilical hernia repair surgery is done when the hernia is causing nerve pain and discomfort in daily life. A hernia may also become dangerous if strangulation of the blood flow to the hernia occurs. Whether or not the repair can be done with laparoscopic surgery or open surgery will depend on the size and severity of your hernia.
Depending on how severe the hernia was, children usually stay up to three days in hospital after surgery. How soon your child will be discharged from hospital depends on whether he or she is able to drink liquids when waking up and how much pain he or she has.
After a laparoscopic surgery your child will be taken to a hospital room and wake up once the anaesthesia has worn off. It is possible your child may feel groggy, confused and nausea after waking up from surgery. Your child may feel pain near the surgical site, but Dr Noorbhai will make sure he or she is as comfortable as possible. You will be advised how to care for your child’s wound. With rest and care, children recover from this surgery with no problems and relatively quickly.
It is essential to re-consult if your child has an unusually high temperature, chills, vomiting, swelling around the incisions, bleeding, is experiencing excessive pain or cramping of the stomach muscles as emergency care may be needed. Approximately 1 week after his or her operation Dr Noorbhai will need to check your child’s wounds and will be able to tell you if your child can go back to school and resume physical activity.