Can a hernia truss help an inguinal hernia?
Answer From David G. Pearson, M.D.
An inguinal hernia occurs when tissue, such as part of the intestine, protrudes through a weak point or tear in the abdominal muscles. The resulting bulge can be painful, especially when you cough, bend over or lift a heavy object. Inguinal hernias are more common in men.
A hernia truss or belt is a supportive undergarment for men designed to keep the protruding tissue in place and relieve discomfort. If you have an inguinal hernia, a hernia truss can help you feel more comfortable temporarily, but it doesn't treat the hernia.
Talk to your doctor if you want to use a truss. It may help to improve some of your hernia-related symptoms. Your doctor can instruct you on proper usage of the truss.
Surgery is often needed to repair a hernia. Untreated hernias may remain without symptoms, or they may grow and become increasingly bothersome. Serious, even life-threatening, complications can occur. However, this is a rare problem.
If your hernia is small and isn't bothering you, your doctor may recommend watchful waiting. If your hernia is causing discomfort, don't rely on a hernia truss. See your doctor to discuss treatment options.
April 08, 2021
David G. Pearson, M.D.
See more Expert Answers
- Groin hernia repair: Inguinal and femoral. American College of Surgeons. https://www.facs.org/~/media/files/education/patient%20ed/groin_hernia.ashx. Accessed Feb. 11, 2021.
- Brooks DC, et al. Classification, clinical features, and diagnosis of inguinal and femoral hernias in adults. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Accessed Feb. 11, 2021.
- Shakil A, et al. Inguinal hernias: Diagnosis and management. American Family Physician. 2020;102:487.
- Pearson DG (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic. Feb. 26, 2021.