Anesthesia for Hernia Repair

This information is useful for children and adults
Why Yale Medicine?
  • Yale Medicine doctors excel at performing the most complicated hernia surgeries.
  • We have expanded our interventional and postoperative pain management services.
  • We are national leaders in anesthesiology who provide specialized care.

If you need a hernia repair, you may be asked whether you'd prefer to have it done while you are awake or asleep. This is an important factor to discuss before your operation with your anesthesiologist, who will talk to you about the best way to control your pain.

Yale Medicine anesthesiologists work alongside surgeons on both routine and highly complex hernia repairs to make sure patients are comfortable and safe. “We take care of the patient so that the surgeon can concentrate on just repairing the hernia,” says Robert Stout, MD, associate medical director of Yale New Haven Hospital Perioperative Services, and assistant professor of anesthesiology at Yale School of Medicine.

There are several different kinds of hernias, including:

Inguinal hernia: It occurs when a section of the intestine or bladder pushes through a weak spot in the abdominal wall down into the groin area.

Ventral hernia: This occurs where the muscles meet in the midline of your abdomen; you may have a congenital weakness there that can split open when strained.

Umbilical hernia: This is most common in children and women who have gone through childbirth. This hernia occurs when a part of the small intestine pushes through the abdominal wall near the belly button (navel).

Hiatal hernia: This type of hernia happens when a section of the stomach passes through a hole in the diaphragm that the esophagus goes through.

Incisional hernia: This can result when scar tissue from a previous surgery breaks down, and the incision reopens, allowing organs to poke through.