Penn Hernia Program provides comprehensive evaluation, diagnosis and treatment for all types of hernias, even the most complex.

Penn Medicine's Hernia Program provides the most comprehensive evaluation, diagnosis, and advanced surgical care from doctors who are leaders in the field of hernia repair. Our dedicated team of physicians and surgeons are some of the most experienced hernia and reconstructive surgeons in the nation, many of whom exclusively focus and specialize in treating patients who suffer from hernias.

Our hernia team collaborates with other Penn specialists in plastic surgery, infectious disease, general surgery, physical medicine and rehabilitation, physical and occupational therapy and pain management to provide multidisciplinary patient care. Through this approach, our patients benefit from individualized treatment plans that ensure they receive the most comprehensive assessment and treatment in the region.

Types of Hernias

A hernia occurs when the muscle wall or tissue becomes weak or tears, allowing internal organs and other body tissues to push through the weakened area.

Hernias often cause a visible bulge or swelling. Patients experiencing hernias may feel discomfort, aching or pain and can experience a functional impairment from their hernia. Penn Hernia Center specialists are experienced in evaluating, treating, and managing the various number of hernias patients can experience:

  • Groin (inguinal) hernia - Often caused by lifting or straining and represents the most common hernia type in men.
  • Upper thigh (femoral) hernia - Older women are more likely to have this type of hernia, in which tissue or part of the intestine protrudes into the groin.
  • Hiatal hernia - This condition results in the stomach pushing through an opening in the diaphragm. If small, the hernia may cause no trouble. If larger, it can create heartburn, difficulty swallowing or chest pain and may need surgical repair.
  • Navel (umbilical) hernia - When part of the intestine or other tissue pushes through the navel or belly button, it causes this hernia type. In children, this usually disappears by the preschool years. If it occurs in adults, surgery is needed.
  • Abdominal (ventral) hernias - These develop in various areas of the abdomen. Incisional hernia happens at the site of previous surgery, such as a cesarean section or appendectomy. Diaphragmatic hernia, epigastric hernia, lumbar hernia and Spigelian hernia are other, more rare types of abdominal hernias.

Hernia Repair

Penn Medicine surgeons excel in treating all kinds of hernia cases including complex and recurrent hernias. 

Hernia Research

Penn Medicine's hernia research program conducts ongoing investigational studies to develop new treatments for those suffering from hernias.

Rehabilitation Services

Rehabilitation is important for healthy healing and the prevention of future hernias. Penn Medicine can help you get back to your life.


Meet the team of experts who are associated with the Penn Hernia Program.

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