Ventral Hernia Repair in Birmingham, AL

Dr. Cameron Askew & Dr. S. Andrew Sabo are expertly trained surgeons with extensive experience diagnosing and treating ventral hernias using minimally invasive techniques. If you have been diagnosed with a ventral hernia and are in need of treatment, please call (205) 874-9780 or request an appointment online to schedule your visit at our general surgery clinic in Birmingham, AL.

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Ventral Hernia Repair

Learn about ventral hernia repair and understand your options

Get back to what matters most

Every year, surgeons in the U.S. perform between 350,000 and 500,000 ventral hernia repairs.1 

A ventral hernia happens when tissue pushes through an opening in your abdominal muscles, creating a visible bulge or tender area. Depending on where the hernia appears and what causes it, doctors may refer to a ventral or abdominal hernia by other names. The most common types of ventral hernias can happen at the site of an earlier surgical incision (incisional hernia), near your belly button (umbilical hernia), or above your belly button (epigastric hernia).2

Understanding your options

When a hernia appears, doctors sometimes recommend watchful waiting, but surgery is the only way to repair a hernia.3 In all repairs, surgeons reposition the abdominal muscle over the bulging tissue and, in most cases, reinforce the muscle with some type of surgical mesh to prevent the hernia from recurring.4

Some ventral hernias may require a more complex repair, which is when the surgeon has to separate and restructure the abdominal wall muscle.

Surgeons can repair ventral hernias with traditional open surgery, which requires a large incision in your abdomen, or a minimally invasive approach. In traditional open surgery, the surgeon looks directly at the surgical area through the incision and repairs the hernia using hand-held tools.

There are two minimally invasive approaches: laparoscopic surgery and robotic-assisted surgery, possibly with da Vinci® technology. Surgeons perform minimally invasive laparoscopic or robotic-assisted surgeries through a few small incisions. To perform a laparoscopic hernia repair, surgeons use special long-handled tools while viewing magnified images from the laparoscope (camera) on a video screen. 

How da Vinci works

Surgeons can perform ventral hernia repair using da Vinci technology. With da Vinci, your surgeon sits at a console next to you and operates using tiny instruments through a few small incisions.

A camera provides a high-definition, 3D magnified view inside your body. Every hand movement your surgeon makes is translated by the da Vinci system in real time to bend and rotate the instruments with precision.

It’s important to remember that Intuitive does not provide medical advice. After discussing all options with your doctor, only you and your doctor can determine whether surgery with da Vinci is appropriate for your situation. You should always ask your surgeon about his or her training, experience, and patient outcomes.

More about da Vinci

Why surgery with da Vinci?

Data from a nationally based registry suggest potential benefits of ventral hernia repair surgery using da Vinci technology include:

  • Patients who underwent a complex ventral hernia repair with da Vinci stayed in the hospital for less time than patients who underwent an open procedure.5
  • Patients who had a da Vinci procedure for non-complex ventral hernia repair stayed in the hospital for less time than patients who had a laparoscopic repair.5
  • Patients who had a ventral hernia repair with da Vinci went to their doctor’s clinic fewer times within the first 30 days after their procedure than patients who underwent an open procedure.5

All surgery involves risk. You can read more about associated risks of hernia repair here.

Questions you can ask your doctor

  • What medical options are available for my hernia?
  • What happens if I don’t get surgery?
  • What is the difference between open, laparoscopic, and robotic-assisted surgery?
  • Can you tell me about your training, experience, and patient outcomes with da Vinci?
  • How will I feel after surgery?

Resources for learning more

Hernia repair brochure

Take away information about hernia repair with da Vinci technology in our brochure designed for patients and their families.

About your options

General surgery with da Vinci 

Robotic-assisted surgery with da Vinci technology is used in many different types of procedures by general surgeons.

About the specialty

1. Laparoscopic Ventral Hernia Repair Patient Information from SAGES. Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons. Web. 11 January 2019 

2. Muysoms, F.E., Miserez, M., Berrevoet, F., et al. Classification of primary and incisional abdominal wall hernias. Hernia. 2009 Aug; 13(4): 407–414. 

3. Ventral Hernia Repair, American College of Surgeons, Web, 11 January 2019

4. Hernia Surgical Mesh Implants. U.S. Food & Drug Administration. Web. 10 January 2019. 

5. Supporting data includes data from a nationally based registry.

Disclosures and Important Safety Information

Surgical Risks

Risks associated with hernia repair (ventral, incisional, umbilical, inguinal) include recurrence, bowel injury, infection of mesh, erosion of mesh, urinary retention, chronic pain.

Important Safety Information

Patients should talk to their doctor to decide if da Vinci® surgery is right for them. Patients and doctors should review all available information on non-surgical and surgical options and associated risks in order to make an informed decision. 

Serious complications may occur in any surgery, including da Vinci surgery, up to and including death. Serious risks include, but are not limited to, injury to tissues and organs and conversion to other surgical techniques which could result in a longer operative time and/or increased complications. For Important Safety Information, including surgical risks, indications, and considerations and contraindications for use, please also refer to

Individuals' outcomes may depend on a number of factors, including but not limited to patient characteristics, disease characteristics and/or surgeon experience.

Da Vinci Xi® System Precaution Statement

The demonstration of safety and effectiveness for the specific procedure(s) discussed in this material was based on evaluation of the device as a surgical tool and did not include evaluation of outcomes related to the treatment of cancer (overall survival, disease-free survival, local recurrence) or treatment of the patient’s underlying disease/condition. Device usage in all surgical procedures should be guided by the clinical judgment of an adequately trained surgeon. 

Medical Advice and Locating a Doctor

Patients should talk to their doctor to decide if da Vinci surgery is right for them. Other options may be available and appropriate. Only a doctor can determine whether da Vinci surgery is appropriate for a patient’s situation. Patients and doctors should review all available information on both non-surgical and surgical options in order to make an informed decision.

Surgeons experienced with the da Vinci system can be found using the Surgeon Locator. Intuitive Surgical provides surgeons with training on the use of the da Vinci system but does not certify, credential or qualify the surgeons listed in the Surgeon Locator.

Published Evidence

In order to provide benefit and risk information, Intuitive Surgical reviews the highest available level of evidence on procedures named above. Intuitive Surgical strives to provide a complete, fair and balanced view of the clinical literature. However, our materials should not be seen as a substitute for a comprehensive literature review for inclusion of all potential outcomes. We encourage patients and physicians to review the original publications and all available literature in order to make an informed decision. Clinical studies are typically available at 

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Schedule Your Ventral Hernia Repair in Birmingham Today

Our board-certified general surgeons specialize in using daVinci technology to perform ventral hernia repairs for patients at our general surgery clinic in Birmingham. If you have a hernia and would like to determine if  you are a candidate for daVinci minimally-invasive surgery, please call (205) 874-9780 to schedule your consultation.

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