What to expect after hernia surgery

Written by cheryl gregory
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What to expect after hernia surgery
(Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

A hernia erupts when a weakened abdominal muscle tears, allowing the organs inside the body to push through. If you are going to have hernia surgery, you may be curious about what to expect after your operation.

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Hospital stay

Many people who have hernia surgery return home the same day as the surgery. In some cases, the stay may be a bit longer.

What to expect after hernia surgery
In the hospital (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Henry Merino)


Your doctor will encourage you to begin walking immediately. You can resume most of your normal activities right away, but you should avoid heavy lifting or straining for six to eight weeks after your surgery. This could disrupt the hernia repair.


There is no cutting or sewing of muscle tissue during hernia surgery, so the pain you experience should be minimal. The doctor will prescribe a pain medicine or have you take Tylenol for relief.

What to expect after hernia surgery
Pain medicine. (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Charles Williams)

Sports and recreational activities

Under most circumstances, the doctor will encourage you to resume normal physical activities immediately. You should begin walking immediately after your surgery. Avoid contact sports for at least three weeks.

What to expect after hernia surgery
Playing football. (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Wonker)

Complete recovery

You should completely recover from your hernia repair in two to four weeks.

What to expect after hernia surgery
Recovery. (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Ruben)

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