Paraumbilical Hernia vs. Umbilical Hernia

Paraumbilical Hernia vs. Umbilical Hernia

Table of Contents
FeatureUmbilical HerniaParaumbilical Hernia
LocationDirectly through navelNear navel, but not through ring
AgeMore common in babies/childrenMore common in adults
SizeUsually smallerUsually larger
Risk of complicationsHigher risk of strangulationLower risk of strangulation

Umbilical and paraumbilical hernias, Despite sharing some commonalities, Both have their own unique characteristics.

Having a Vivid Understanding of These Types of Hernias will play a crucial part in the treatment planning and Diagnosis.

In this article, we will Deep dive into the key Differences between paraumbilical hernia and umbilical hernia, their causes, symptoms, complications, treatment options, etc.

paraumbilical hernia vs umbilical hernia

While both paraumbilical hernias and umbilical hernias involve protrusions near the belly button, their anatomical locations and characteristics set them apart.

Paraumbilical hernias typically manifest just above or below the navel, while umbilical hernias directly involve the navel itself.

Understanding these subtle differences aids in precise identification and appropriate treatment.


Let us Have a look at the Major Causes of both Umbilical Hernia and Paraumbilical Hernia

Causes of Umbilical Hernia:

Umbilical hernias often result from a weakness in the abdominal wall muscles around the navel, allowing abdominal contents to push through.

This can be congenital or develop due to factors like obesity or pregnancy.

Causes of Paraumbilical Hernia:

Paraumbilical hernias, on the other hand, stem from a weakening of the tissue layers just above or below the belly button.

This weakening can be influenced by factors such as obesity, multiple pregnancies, or abdominal surgery.

In both cases, If you want to know how to find out if you have a Hernia, there are common treatment methods followed by professionals such as the three-finger test. So it is always advised to consult a Hernia Specialist for these procedures.


Let us Have a look at the Major Symptoms of both Umbilical Hernia and Paraumbilical Hernia

Symptoms of Umbilical Hernia:

Recognizable by a visible bulge or swelling near the navel, umbilical hernias may also cause discomfort, particularly when coughing or lifting.

In infants, these hernias might close on their own, while adults may require intervention for symptomatic cases.

Symptoms of Paraumbilical Hernia:

Paraumbilical hernias share the bulging characteristic but may differ in location and size.

Individuals might experience varying degrees of pain or tenderness, and the protrusion can be more noticeable when intra-abdominal pressure increases.


Let us have a look at the Complications of Umbilical Hernia and Paraumbilical Hernia 

Complications of Umbilical Hernia:

Although umbilical hernias are generally considered low-risk, complications such as incarceration (where abdominal contents get trapped) or strangulation (involving compromised blood flow) can occur.

Prompt medical attention is crucial if these complications arise.

Complications of Paraumbilical Hernia:

Paraumbilical hernias may also lead to incarceration or strangulation, necessitating timely intervention.

Understanding the unique risks associated with paraumbilical hernias is vital for effective management.

Does Umbilical Hernia Cause Pain?

The simple answer is it depends. Not all umbilical hernias cause pain, especially in children, where they are most common. In fact, many children with umbilical hernias may not even be aware of them.

However, adults and older adults are more prone to experiencing pain with umbilical hernias. This pain can manifest in various ways, depending on the size, severity, and individual pain tolerance.

Umbilical Hernia Pain in Children:

Usually painless or presents with a small, soft bulge near the navel.
May become noticeable during crying, coughing, or straining.
Rarely requires medical intervention unless it becomes incarcerated or significantly larger.

Umbilical Hernia Pain in Adults:

More likely to cause discomfort, ranging from a dull ache to sharp, stabbing pain.
Pain can worsen with specific activities like lifting, straining, or coughing.
A feeling of fullness or bloating around the navel is common.
Larger or incarcerated hernias can cause severe pain, nausea, and vomiting, warranting immediate medical attention.

Umbilical Hernia Pain in Aged People:

Similar to adults but may be masked by other age-related aches and pains.
Early diagnosis and management are crucial to prevent complications.

Managing Umbilical Hernia Pain:

For mild pain, over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can offer relief.
Warm compresses applied to the area can promote blood flow and ease muscle tension.
Wearing loose-fitting clothing avoids pressure on the bulge and reduces discomfort.
Limiting strenuous activities minimizes further irritation.

Which Doctor to Consult For Umbilical Hernia:

A general practitioner can diagnose and manage most umbilical hernias.
In some cases, referral to a specialist like a gastroenterologist or surgeon may be necessary.

Treatment for Umbilical and Paraumbilical Hernia

Let us Deep dive into the Treatment options.  

Treatment for Umbilical Hernia:

  • The management of umbilical hernias can involve watchful waiting, especially in infants, as these hernias may close spontaneously.
  • However, surgical intervention is recommended for larger or symptomatic cases to prevent complications.

Treatment for Paraumbilical Hernia:

  • Paraumbilical hernias may be managed through observation, especially if they are small and asymptomatic.
  • Lifestyle modifications, such as weight management, can be beneficial.
  • Surgical repair may be considered for larger hernias or those causing discomfort.

In Both cases, it is advised to consult the Best Hernia Surgeon for treatment.

Different types of Umbilical Hernia Surgery

There are different types of Surgical options available for  Umbilical Hernia Let us see them one by one

Open Surgery:

Traditional approach: A surgeon makes an incision above or around the navel, pushes the protruding tissue back into the abdomen, and reinforces the weakened area with mesh or stitches.
Pros: Well-established technique, effective for large or complex hernias.
Cons: Longer recovery time, visible sca

Laparoscopic Surgery:

Minimally invasive approach: The Laparoscopic Hernia Repair is done Using tiny incisions and a laparoscope (thin lighted tube with a camera), the surgeon views the hernia and repairs it with mesh or stitches.
Pros: Less pain, faster recovery, smaller scars.
Cons: May not be suitable for large or complex hernias, requires general anesthesia.

Robotic Hernia Surgery

Minimally invasive approach: During the Robotic Hernia Surgery The Laparoscopic Hernia Repair is done Using tiny incisions and a laparoscope (thin lighted tube with a camera), the surgeon views the hernia and repairs it with mesh or stitches.
Pros: Less pain, faster recovery, smaller scars.
Cons: May not be suitable for large or complex hernias, and requires general anesthesia.

Recovery Time for Paraumbilical Hernia and Umbilical Hernia:

  • Post-surgery recovery is a critical aspect of hernia management.

  • The recovery time for both paraumbilical and umbilical hernias depends on various factors, including the size of the hernia and individual healing capacity.

  • Generally, patients can expect a gradual return to normal activities under the guidance of their healthcare providers.


In conclusion, the subtle yet significant differences between paraumbilical and umbilical hernias underscore the importance of accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment.

Whether managing symptoms through lifestyle modifications or knowing when to undergo umbilical hernia surgery, individuals with these hernias can make informed decisions by consulting the Best Hernia Surgeon for their health.

Timely intervention and a collaborative approach between patients and healthcare providers pave the way for effective hernia management.

Dr. K. Amilthan MBBS., MS., FMAS., FALS.

Heal Your Hernia Now:

Your Journey to Wellness Begins with us.

Leave a comment on this post

Latest Posts

Schedule an Appointment