Open Hernia Surgery v/s Laparoscopic Hernia Surgery

Open Hernia surgery v/s laparoscopic Hernia Surgery

Over the years, science has evolved and the new laparoscopic approach to performing surgery has come to light. But the ultimate question that has came into the minds of patients who have to undergo Hernia surgery is to choose between the “laparoscopic” and the “open surgery approach”. 

The answer to this question depends on what the patients expect from the surgery. The answer is different on the basis of cost, pain,
recovery or anesthesia. Now let us do some basic comparisons between the two surgical approaches. 

Basic Comparison between laparoscopic and open hernia surgery

A hernia is a hole through the muscles in the abdominal wall. There are very less chances that a hernia repaired by itself, and hence the ultimate option, which remains is surgery. Surgery can be performed from either the abdominal side, as in the laparoscopic approach, or through the skin tissues, as in the traditional, open surgery approach.

Before going into detail about these approaches, let us know some common myths that everyone believes to be true. 

Some common myths about these approaches

  • “The laparoscopic approach is mostly preferred by doctors” –  The most common myth amongst all is that the laparoscopic approach is more preferred by doctors. It is not at all true, Doctors reveal that they opt for “laparoscopic approaches” in 50% of cases, and for another 50%, they opt for open surgery. 
  • “The success rate of laparoscopic surgery is more than open surgery”- This is another myth that has been proved wrong by studies. Data reveal that the success rate of both surgical approaches is almost the same.
  • “There are fewer chances of having complications in laparoscopic surgery”- Another common myth that prevails in the mind of patients is regarding the after-surgery complications. It has been proved that patients who have undergone laparoscopic surgery have the same chances of having complications, in comparison to those who have undergone Open surgery. The chances of having an infection in both cases are less than 1%. 

Some key differences between laparoscopic Hernia Surgery and Open Hernia Surgery 

  1. Anaesthesia Used – Doctors worldwide perform laparoscopic surgery under general Anaesthesia only whereas Open surgery can also be performed under local Anaesthesia.
  2. Pain management after surgery – Studies reveal that patients who have undergone laparoscopic hernia surgery feel relief from pain after 24-48 hrs of surgery and once the pain goes away, people won’t be able to differentiate between both the surgeries.
  3. Recovery time – The recovery time under laparoscopic surgery is comparatively less than the time in case of open hernia surgery. Doctors suggest laparoscopic surgery for those who are professionals and have very little time to recover whereas they suggest open surgery for patients who can afford to be rested for a longer period. 
  4. No. of mesh used – Two meshes are generally used in an open hernia surgery providing more strength to the repair area as compared to laparoscopic where only a single mesh is required. 
  5. Cost – If budget is a factor determining your surgical procedure, then you must know that the open surgical approach costs much less than modern laparoscopic surgery. 

Why laparoscopic surgical approach has an edge over the open surgical approach? 

Although open hernia surgery is very cost-effective as compared to laparoscopic hernia surgery. But reduced pain and earlier return to normal activities in laparoscopic surgery outweigh any difference in cost and hence give laparoscopic surgery an edge over the open surgery.