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  1. #1
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    Inguinal Hernia Question

    Howdy folks! I just turned 50 last week and since this seems to be one of the friendliest forums on the board,I thought I'd introduce myself here as I'll probably post here more often than not. I had'nt biked at all since my teen yrs,up until this spring,when I quit smoking.I'd quit before but always backslid within a yr and 1/2 or so. I thought that if I had a pursuit that the habit directly impacts,maybe I'd have a little more luck this time. I quit in March and bought a Tassajara Mtn bike and so far its been a great incentive(along with all the other obvious ones). I put some semi-slicks on the bike and worked up to 15-30 miles on the road,at least every other day if not every day. And 10-12 miles on the graveled roads and dirt trails in the coast range foothills on the weekend. I was finally getting to the point where I was pedaling even more than I was pushing on the steep hills up there.
    Then the first week of this month I discovered I had an inguinal hernia. "Welcome to age 50,BTW heres your hernia!" I had an incisional type(not laprascopic,about a 3 1/2 inch incision) surgery the 10th. The doctor hasn't been any help re how long I should wait to resume bicycling again. When I asked,all he would or could say was,"I don't know,it might not hurt'. Which is pretty much his stock answer for everything! Has anybody been here,done this? I'm not having much pain now,I wonder if I should just play it by ear and try it & see how it feels? I don't want to re-damage anything and have to start all over with this,but I don't want to sit around and get completely out of shape again either.

  2. #2
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    I had my inguinal hernia repaired last November, after 10 months of the discomfort of constantly 'pushing' my internals back in its place, even while riding. Although I had absolutely no pain a week after surgery, my doc advised me to stay off the bike for at least a month during my visit for the removal of the staples. Regardless, I was back on my bike only after 2 weeks......no hardcore riding. After another couple of weeks of soft pedalling, I was riding hard again. The repair job has been holding strong so far...
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  3. #3
    Senior Member freeranger's Avatar
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    I had double inguinal hernias-had laproscopic surgery. Took me 6 weeks before I felt like doing a bike ride.
    That's been about 4 years or so ago and no problems (don't ya love kevlar!). I mtn.bike, so there's a fair amount of pressure-doc said I'd never have another problem and I believe him!

  4. #4
    Senior Member Gustav's Avatar
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    I had an incisional surgical repair of an inguinal hernia just about two years ago. I waited about three weeks before I started riding easy, mostly on the trainer. A week after that I was on my bike and experience no difficulties. I returned to biking sooner than I returned to my real job: trumpet playing. Lots less pressure on that area biking than blowing!
    "Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be." (Abraham Lincoln)

  5. #5
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    I had a right ingual hernia repaired back in 1942 and was back in service right away in the army. I don't think there is any problem with riding your bike right away. Just don't strain yourself right away.

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    Thanks for the replies! I guess it must be mostly a matter of "want" + how you'r feeling. I think I'll give it until this weekend and then try an easy pedal around the neighborhood and then take it from there. Thanks again!
    Last edited by Norwester; 08-31-05 at 02:20 AM.

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    Senior Member DnvrFox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Gardner
    I had a right ingual hernia repaired back in 1942 and was back in service right away in the army. I don't think there is any problem with riding your bike right away. Just don't strain yourself right away.

    Hi, Robert. Haven't heard from you in awhile.

    So glad to see your post.
    Still bicycling about 2,000 miles per year?

  8. #8
    What's the speed of dark?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norwester
    ...until this spring,when I quit smoking.I'd quit before but always backslid within a yr and 1/2 or so.

    ....I wonder if I should just play it by ear and try it & see how it feels? I don't want to re-damage anything and have to start all over with this,but I don't want to sit around and get completely out of shape again either.

    Two things. Congratulations on quitting smoking. Its really not a big deal though. I did it a whole bunch of times. But really, stay with it; you'll appreciate it in the years to come.

    As far as the hernia goes, just take your time. It will heal. If you feel it..stop. Otherwise, do what you want to do. There really is no long term damage from a hernia.

  9. #9
    Macaws Rock! michaelnel's Avatar
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    I have a small umbilical hernia (a tear in my abdominal wall about 1" long starting at my belly button and going straight up from there). Since I don't have medical insurance, I just push my guts back through the hole several times a day. I can't afford to get it fixed. :-(
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  10. #10
    Ogr8nwmypstmksnosnse pgoat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by michaelnel View Post
    I have a small umbilical hernia (a tear in my abdominal wall about 1" long starting at my belly button and going straight up from there). Since I don't have medical insurance, I just push my guts back through the hole several times a day. I can't afford to get it fixed. :-(
    are u still alive?
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    People whose sig line does not include a jsharr quote annoy me.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Chaco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by michaelnel View Post
    I have a small umbilical hernia (a tear in my abdominal wall about 1" long starting at my belly button and going straight up from there). Since I don't have medical insurance, I just push my guts back through the hole several times a day. I can't afford to get it fixed. :-(
    If you start feeling pain, though, make sure to see a doctor within 24 hours. I have an umbilical hernia, too, though it's a small one. My doc said there's no need to repair it, unless pain starts. That could indicate some serious problems that require immediate medical attention.

  12. #12
    Senior Member ollo_ollo's Avatar
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    I had surgery a few years ago to re-do a failed hernia repair from 1964. My surgeon said cycling was OK whenever I felt up to it, just to take it easy, so I began casual rides around the neighborhood & local bike paths on day 4 after the operation with no problems. I did make it easy on myself by riding a mixte framed bike which avoided any mounting/dismounting strain. Made a very quick recovery and was soon back to regular commuting. Don
    visit my homebuilding blog: www.monoplanar.blogspot.com

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    I had my own surgery to repair a right inguinal hernia last Friday (July 20th). I had a standard incision with a piece of mesh installed to reinforce the muscle wall. My surgeon has competed in triathlons and is sensitive to biking issues.

    I had my followup today (July 26th). Healing is progressing well--I'm right on schedule. In response to the question about returning to biking, his response was: go ahead and give it a try. Start with easy spinning and short routes. Build up to longer miles. You can't tear or harm anything, but if you're sore the next day, give it a rest.

    I don't know if this advice extends to anyone else, but this is what he told me. I'll try a five mile trip tomorrow and move along from there.

    Bob P.

  14. #14
    bobkat
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    ollo ollo is right. Try it and see. Don't overdo it, but if it doesn't hurt too much, go for it. If it hurts, then don't so it. No Doc can tell you exactly when to go ahead as everyone and everyone repair is different, although he should have explained there is a wide variety of answers to this same question. Everyone tends to be different. Some could and would ride within a week, but 3 - 4 weeks before trial and error should be OK.
    But remember that pain is a protective mechanism - mother nature is telling you something. If it hurts, back off a bit.

  15. #15
    Fast for a Fred JayhawKen's Avatar
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    Must be the season for middle aged guys to do this - I had a right inguinal repaired on the 25th. It was a recurrence of a repair that was originally done about 25 years ago. I kind of figured out I had a problem in early June and backed off the training intensity quite a bit to prevent serious harm until I was able to get in to see the doc. Between busy schedules and such that didn't happen until early July, so now assuming a several week recovery my 2007 season is pretty much a total write off.

    I do have a bit of a concern that I need to follow up with the surgeon on - during the recovery room visit he said "you were pretty torn up in there - it took quite me quite a bit longer to make the repair than I would have expected". He also said something about maybe I have a greater propensity for these due to my body type or something - at any rate he suggested that heavy weight room workouts are probably not a great idea for me in the future. So I need to find out does that translate to any risk from hard cycling?

    Anyway, he said 80% of full strength would be achieved in 8 weeks. At the 2 week follow up visit I'm hoping he says it's okay to begin light workouts. At this point I'd settle for doing 40 minutes on the trainer if I could begin doing something.

  16. #16
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    Question to all you hernia heads! LOL I have a reoccurence of a inguinal hernia that was repaired the old fashioned way (no mesh) about 25 years ago...not knowing about the reoccurence, I signed up for the city to shore 75 mile MS fundraising run from Cherry Hill to Ocean City, New Jersey to be held on Oct 3rd! I have raised $600 and dont want to disappoint the donators...if I push in on the hernia, it goes back in....what I have read on the internet, as long as it does that, surgery isn't needed yet. If I ride the 75 miles slowly, what are your opinions about any more damage being done to it? Tracy Allen

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