By far the most extensive and helpful resource I’ve found anywhere. Many thanks to all the generous posters. Have been most interested in following the people who are So Cal-based, including soccer player, Mike L and SoKal. And like soccer player (I think), I had been referred to Craig Smith.
Guess need to begin like everyone else with my story . . .
Currently 52 y.o. Active my entire life (basketball, tennis, martial arts, running, working out, etc.) Ten years ago found a bulge in right abdomen, above the crease where leg meets abdomen, right of navel, left of hip bone. It would pop out occasionally when I was lying in bed but I could always press it back down. Wasn’t painful so much as unnerving. Just didn’t seem normal. Researched the regular hernia route and, after many imaging tests, MDs (surgeon, sports med, ortho, etc.) and other research, a top surgeon said it could be a hernia (based on my description of a mass that could be pushed in) and said we should take a look—which, of course, to a surgeon means fillet you. Did an open procedure and found nothing, so he closed me back up. But he dug around in the inguinal area, not 5 inches higher and toward the hip bone. So after I healed up, I essentially worked myself back into shape and continued for about six years. But I continued to have discomfort and the bulge never went away. Finally saw Craig Smith, who thought it was a torn muscle or fascia rather than SH but recommended PT over surgery. Gave me the same sort of odds of success soccer player cited (about 50%). Back into rehab, gradually got back into the swing of things. But last December, while moving furniture to accommodate the Christmas tree, felt more of a pull in the central part of the abdomen and down into the groin. I could tell this was different. Unlike first episode, this was a discrete, definable action and following pain. Basically spent the entire Xmas season (2-3 weeks) lying around with ice on my abdomen and groin. Went thru another assessment with all the tests, including CT w/ contrast and MRI. All negative, tho one surgeon thought he could note a thinning of the abdominal wall that might be consistent with torn fascia. He suggested reinforcement with mesh. I declined at that time. Then went back to Smith, who thought this was an aggravation of the original injury and suggested therapy again, citing the 50/50 odds of success. (I do like that the guy is very honest in his assessment, and there’s something to be said for the integrity of a surgeon who counsels against surgery.) After months of work, finally got back into swing of things this past summer. But reinjured it again last week, and I had said that if it happened again, I’d seriously consider surgery.
And that's where I am. But this board has me considering and re-considering it, particularly the slow recovery time of many, the issues to consider (mesh/no mesh, open/lap, etc.) and the uncertain progress of others.
I’ve got many of the unfortunate positive symptoms: popping hip, pain in the crease, discomfort at times running into right testicle. But I’ve already had one unsuccessful surgery. If I do it again, it’s got to be right, and I’ve got to have pretty good odds that I’ll bounce back strong.
Part of this is adjusting to my body’s slowing down and adjusting my level of physical activity, for sure. Pretty much quit hard-style martial arts 20 years ago, when I pulled my groin on the side where I’m currently having problems, which may have been the start of it all, but I’m not a “lay around” kind of guy. I want to be active. And I’ve got a 5-year-old that I want to keep active with.
So, I’m really debating my next move—surgery or therapy. I’m going to begin with some more assessments. For you So Cal folks, I do have a highly recommended therapist (South Bay PT) and sports chiro (www.sobaysportsmed.com) that I’m going to check out. I guess my preference—given the odds I’ve been presented with and the generally longer-than-advertised recovery time—to continue to avoid surgery.
Since I’m now “part of the community,” I’ll continue to post progress as I am able . . .
Thanks again. This has been a tremendous source of info.