Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors

"Will eating too much make a hernia worse?"

ZocdocAnswersWill eating too much make a hernia worse?


Got diagnosed with a hernia that I will have surgery to repair in one week. Sometimes I think that eating makes it feel worse. Should I stop eating so much? Could eating too much actually make it worse before I have a chance to have surgery?


A hernia is a defect in any enclosed area of the body. In most cases (and almost certainly in your case), a hernia is an abdominal wall defect that allows parts of your bowel to move outside the abdominal cavity. To fix the hernia a surgeon simply closes the defect usually with a piece of mesh (plastic like material) that will make sure that the bowel can't get outside the cavity. In most cases a hernia is simply an annoying thing that gets in the way, can be unsightly, and also can be painful. The dangerous complication of a hernia is incarceration. This is where a loop of bowel gets stuck in the hernia and strangled. This can cut off blood flow to the bowel and cause part of it to die. Eating food certainly can engorge the portion of the bowel that is herniated which can be uncomfortable. This seems to be the case with your. However, I don't think that this is particularly dangerous. In other words, I don't think that you will risk your hernia become incarcerated by heating. The best type of doctor for you to schedule an appointment with about this issue is a general surgeon preferably the one that will perform your surgery. Good luck.

Zocdoc Answers is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.