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Lower Ab Tear vs. Hernia

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40 year old male, group fitness instructor. I have seen a DO and surgeon.

I have pain coming from my right lower abdomen. Physical, examination from (2) doctors concluded that I either 1) Have a very very early inguinal hernia or 2) a significant injury to the lower abdomen. In either case, I have been told to hang out for a month to see if it gets better on it's own.

The thought is that, if it is a muscle, that it could be tore and bleeding/irratating the nerve. Or, that it is the inguinal never being pinched by a brand new hernia.

I have never had a hernia. It does not run in our family. I do not lift weights above 45lbs and my abs and para-spinals are ridiculously strong. The only injury I can point to was a burning sensation in the same area about 6 weeks ago while doing curls. I stopped immediately and the pain disappeared nd did not come back.

Anytime I do anything that works the hip flexor my ab gets extremely painful. The only time it does not hurt is after I have been laying on my back for a while. Any attempt to stretch the area makes it worse.

Anyone out there gone throw something similar?
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replied December 9th, 2011
Experienced User
Possible Sports Hernia or Athletic Pubalgia.
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replied December 9th, 2011
Ok, so little help, would that hurt even if I was doing nothing? Aggravated by sitting? Good when laying? Seems plausible though because everything I do to work or stretch the flexor causes a problem. Thank you for answering me.
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replied December 9th, 2011
Experienced User
Yep. Sounds all so familiar. Hurts when sitting, hurts when getting out of bed, hurts when getting in and out of the car, hurts when pooing (the pushing), hurts when sneezing, hurts when doing ab work including lateral twists, BUT...all calm and not so uncomfortable when lying flat. It could be a SH or AP. May be a tear on one of the obliques or the aponeurosis. May be a tear of the rectus abdominis - lateral, anterior or posterior, not likely a medial tear. May be FAI. OR...any combination of the above. Or, as it was already pointed out to you, an incipient or occult hernia. The groin area is one of the toughest areas to diagnose accurately.

If you haven't gotten their yet, check out Mike Boyle's easy rehab regime to possibly help strengthen the area - www.strengthcoach.com/public/1606.cfm

There are some groin strain exercises you can work in there - www.andorrapediatrics.com/ap_folders/hand- outs/knowledge/groin_strain.htm

Also, there are core strengthening exercises geared toward the inguinal area at the Hernia Bible - http://www.groin-hernia.com/herniabible/ex ercises.html

Of course, everyone needs to use a modicum of common sense - if these exercises hurt or are painful, don't do them! (and I wouldn't do them all on the same day either - you don't want to overload the area) They are not designed to be power exercises or to see how far you can stretch yourself, but stabilizing exercises to take pressure off of stressed muscles and tendons that are experiencing the pain by strengthening the remaining good muscles. You're a fitness instructor, you know how this theory works.

Definitely try the rest route before you start down the research road for surgery.
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