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What Is Involved in Groin Surgery?

During an orchiectomy, one or both testicles are surgically removed.
A patient may need groin surgery for an inguinal hernia.
Article Details
  • Written By: Meshell Powell
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 18 July 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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The groin area of the body is basically considered to be the lowest part of the abdomen, closest to the upper leg. Groin surgery is primarily used to treat a medical condition known as an inguinal hernia, although other conditions may be treated through this type of surgery as well. There are several different procedures that may be used to perform groin surgery, depending on the overall health of the patient as well as the preference of the surgeon. Most patients experience complete recoveries following this surgery, although complications such as pain, infection, or numbness are possible. Any specific questions or concerns about groin surgery in an individual situation should be discussed with a doctor or other medical professional.

There are several different methods of groin surgery that may be used, depending on the specific situation. Open surgery requires the use of a large incision and carries the greatest risks of complications, such as infection or pain. Laparoscopic surgery uses several small incisions, into which tiny instruments are inserted to help the surgeon navigate more precisely. Recovery is usually easier with this type of surgery, although there may be a greater risk of internal injury. A plastic mesh material is typically used to repair the hernia, although other materials or techniques may occasionally be used.

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An inguinal hernia occurs when a small portion of the intestine protrudes through an abnormal opening in the lower portion of the abdominal wall. This is a relatively common occurrence in people of all ages, and it is the primary reason for groin surgery. The exact type of procedure used depends on individual symptoms, surgeon preference, and the overall health of the patient.

A radical orchiectomy is a type of of groin surgery that may be used to treat testicular cancer. One or both testicles are removed through a lower abdominal incision and may be replaced with a prosthetic testicle in some cases. This form of surgery is often preferred over removing the affected testicle through a scrotal incision due to the possibility of the cancer spreading into the lymphatic system.

Treatment of a varicocele, or a swollen blood vessel in the testicle area, may require the use of groin surgery in some cases. The majority of men who have a varicocele do not need any specific medical treatment unless symptoms develop such as pain, changes in testicle size, or the appearance of noticeably enlarged blood vessels. These symptoms may indicate the development of severe complications and often require surgical repair of the affected vessels.

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