This gentleman lived with his hernia until he just got tired of it. We do not recommend letting hernias get this big for several reasons. First, he is lucky that he made it this long without a strangulation. Second, some of these large hernias cannot be fixed because once it has gone too far it is not possible to get all of the intestine back into the abdomen. Third, if you fix your hernia when it is smaller the surgery is much easier and the recovery is much quicker.
After surgery the same patient looks like a new man. Now that he is healed he is very happy and feels like it never happened. He tell me he does not know why he did not do it sooner.
This is a picture of a typical umbilical hernia before surgery. The incision to repair this hernia is made inside the belly button and is invisible after healing. Most surgeons will plug these hernias with mesh but we have seen problems with mesh plugs. We prefer to do a pledgeted suture repair which has outstanding results.