A hernia is the passage of an organ through the wall of the structure that contains it. The most common types of hernia are:
- The hiatal hernia, where the stomach passes through the diaphragm, usually where the esophagus passed through the diaphragm.
- Where fatty tissues in the abdomen protrude through the abdominal wall of muscle, generally through a weak spot.
- Sciatica, where a spinal disc swells and affects either the lumbar nerves, the sacral nerves or the sciatic nerve.
- The inquinal hernia, which is tested for with the now cliche "turn your head and cough", where the contents of the abdominal cavity through the inquinal canal which, in males, carries the spermatic cord to the testicles.
Hernias can present with pain, but often are just a palpable or visible protrusion that is otherwise asymptomatic. Most hernias can be treated with surgery. An untreated hernia may in some cases result in organ damage.