What is a Complex Hernia?

A hernia is a relatively common condition that can affect the young, the elderly, men, and women. Hernias are estimated to affect approximately 5 percent of the population at any given time in their lives.


A hernia occurs when the inside layers of the abdominal wall weaken then bulge or tear. The inner lining of the abdomen pushes through the weakened area to form a balloon-like sac, which in turn, can cause a loop of intestine or abdominal tissue to slip into the sac, causing pain and other potentially serious health problems.

A hernia becomes complex when repeated surgical attempts to close the hole in the abdominal wall fail. In cases where hernia surgery fails and the person has a recurrent hernia, the chances of the surgery being successful diminish with each successive surgery. When surrounding tissue is especially weak or stretched, it may need to be augmented or replaced. This often occurs in areas of previous surgical scars, the umbilicus, or in the groin area. At The Institute for Treatment of Complex Hernias, our team of physicians take a unique, highly successful approach to the repair of complex, recurrent hernias known as the BARs procedure.