Texas Health Surgical Care of Dallas Texas

Preparing for Reconstructive Surgery and Beyond

Most people with hernias have surgery to repair them, even if they do not have symptoms. Surgery typically offers a less dangerous course than the risk of strangulation, a serious problem that can occur when part of the intestine gets trapped inside a hernia.

Preoperative Care

Preoperative planning is very important to a successful outcome from abdominal wall reconstruction. One of the Texas Health Surgical Care physicians will review your case and any imaging test results with you. Once a decision for surgery is made, the following steps should be taken to help promote a good outcome:

  • If diabetes is present, practice good control of the disease (ideally to an A1C of 7.5 or less)
  • No smoking for 4 weeks prior to surgery
  • Weight loss as appropriate
  • Skin preparation as prescribed by Texas Health Surgical Care to minimize risk of MRSA

The Surgical Procedure

Texas Health Surgical Care physicians perform surgical procedures at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas.

Physicians perform reconstructions on large complex hernias using muscle releases such as external oblique, transverse abdominus and retrorectus to allow for closure of the defect. We may also used Botox® in select cases to assist with abdominal wall closure in large defects. Mesh materials may be inserted during the procedure to reinforce the abdominal wall closure. The type, size and placement of the mesh are tailored to the individual patient’s needs.

Skin and soft tissue coverage of the hernial defect is also critically important to maximize wound healing. Physicians at Texas Health Surgical Care are trained in the use of Spy Elite laser-assisted fluorescent imaging to aid in the visualization and assessment of blood flow to the skin during some surgical procedures. This technology helps reduce tissue and skin involvement to promote skin and wound healing. When skin coverage is more complex, plastic surgery may be recommended.

Postsurgical Care

Enhanced recovery protocols used by Texas Health Surgical Care during your postoperative hospital stay help to minimize pain and shorten inpatient care. A surgical drain is necessary with abdominal wall reconstruction. The duration of its use can vary and you may be discharged with it. Proper drain care will be taught to you or a family member, or home health will be arranged.

Our staff will follow your progress closely for the first four to six weeks after surgery, but long-term management is our ultimate goal to ensure ongoing improved health. All of our hernia patients are entered in the American Hernia Society Quality Collaborative to support and continually improve the hernia care we deliver.

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