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Is Having No Treatment for a Hernia an Option?

Yes, it is possible to avoid hernia treatment in certain cases. I do not recommend surgery for all hernias. You are probably surprised to hear that not all general surgeons recommend surgery for every hernia that they diagnose. However, before deciding not to have hernia surgery, you are better off first consulting a general surgeon; this is a decision that you should not make on your own.

Examples of hernias that may not need surgery include hernias that can be observed, such as umbilical hernias that have been present since birth and are not painful and have not increased in size. In some instances, small inguinal hernias that are not painful can be merely observed and not treated. It is not unusual in our hernia surgery practice to examine a patient with a large painful hernia on one side and find a small asymptomatic hernia on the other side. In this instance, we will recommend surgery for the larger painful hernia and observation for the other side.

We inform our patients that they can safely observe the hernia if the condition does not bother them or cause pain. But if the hernia becomes larger or symptomatic, they should seek immediate attention. Our experienced surgeons are board certified and have performed over 12,000 hernia surgeries over the course of their careers.

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