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Inguinal Hernia Surgery

DMC surgeon uses less-invasive procedure to treat inguinal hernia with shorter recovery and less pain.

For years, Doctor Doru Bali has been plagued with a recurring inguinal hernia – a large lump in the groin that grows progressively larger. It is painful, especially when lifting objects or exercising – activities that can actually make the condition worse.

Dr. Bali has had three surgeries to repair the inguinal hernia. The first was done when laparoscopy was not an option, so his recovery took weeks rather than days. “Recovery was pretty gruesome,” says Bali. “I hadn’t had any surgeries before that. So having big cuts on both sides of your groin was very painful. I couldn’t even walk straight for a few days.” The following two surgeries were less invasive, but still, the hernia returned. Nearly ten years later, the hernia required yet another surgery to correct it.

By this time, Bali was on staff at the Detroit Medical Center, so when his symptoms returned, he knew the best doctor for the job; Dr. An King Ang, Chief of the Department of Surgery at DMC Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital.

“I’ve seen many of his surgical patients who were very happy,” says Bali. “And many physicians on the medical staff her refer to Dr. Ang as a ‘doctor’s surgeon,’ because he’s really, really great at what he does.”

A hernia, Dr. Ang explains, is a weakness or defect in the fascia layer where the intestinal content that is supposed to be in the abdominal cavity, is protruding through, and creating the bulge. Inguinal hernias are more common in men than in women, and are worsened by physical activity.

The procedure Dr. Ang performs to repair these hernias is done laparascopically and takes about an hour. Instead of making a big incision, Dr. Ang uses a smaller incision. It is less invasive and uses a five-millimeter scope to repair the hernia from the inside. Dr. Ang installs a mesh barrier to prevent the pressure from creating the hernia.

“I see my patient a week after the surgery,” says Ang. “The laparoscopic patients walk in standing, smiling, greeting you like there was no surgery. Most of them tell me they will take one or two pain pills and that’s it. Patients who have had the open procedure walk in hunched and often ask for pain medication. So that’s a big difference. When there’s less pain, the patient’s activities can be started earlier. People who do not have to lift heavy objects can go back to work earlier – in three days.”

Bali was able to stand and walk immediately, and began driving soon after. He was back to work in the emergency department in a week.

“They took good care of me,” he says. “From pre-op and post-anesthesia and afterwards – they really did a great job.”

To connect with Dr. An King Ang at DMC Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital, call 888-DMC-org, or visit his profile on DMC.org.

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Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital
A. King Ang (Connect with this doctor)
Chief, Department of Surgery, Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital Vice Chief of Staff Assistant Clinical Professor of Surgery (WSU)
PRIMARY HOSPITAL: Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital
BOARD CERTIFICATION: American Board of Surgery
EDUCATION/TRAINING: University of the East, Philippines
INTERNSHIP: Sinai Hospital-Detroit, Surgery
RESIDENCY: Sinai Hospital-Detroit, General Surgery
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