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An umbilical hernia is a bulge near the belly button, or navel. Intestines or other tissues may bulge through an opening or a weak spot in the stomach muscles. The hernia has a sac that may hold some intestine, fat, or fluid. Many umbilical hernias are caused by pressure near the belly button. Pressure may come from increased weight, repeated straining, or pregnancy.
A very small hernia may not cause problems. But your doctor may recommend repairing the muscle. This helps you avoid the risk that the hernia might trap some of the tissues or intestine. This could be an emergency.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if you have any problems.
Current as of: September 8, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Steven J. Atlas MD, MPH - Internal Medicine & Heather Quinn MD - Family Medicine & Brian D. O'Brien MD - Internal Medicine
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.
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