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Bruno Rafael da Silva Barbosa, José Carlos Pereira Pinto, Liliana Duarte, Júlio Marques, Carlos Casimiro
(Department of General Surgery, Hospital Center Tondela-Viseu, Viseu, Portugal)
Am J Case Rep 2021; 22:e931398
Obturator hernia is an uncommon (0.07-1% incidence rate) subtype of hernia of the abdominal wall, with its incarceration being a rare cause of bowel obstruction. Obturator hernia has a higher incidence in elderly women and in malnourished people. This type of hernia has the highest morbidity and mortality rates of all abdominal wall hernias. This article reports a case of an emaciated 93-year-old woman who presented with small bowel obstruction due to incarcerated obturator hernia, successfully managed surgically with a modified mesh-plug hernioplasty.
CASE REPORT: An emaciated 93-year-old woman presented with diffuse abdominal pain, more intense on the right iliac fossa, radiating to the right thigh, with 8-h evolution and associated with dark-colored vomiting but normal bowel transit. This patient had a surgical history of right Richter´s femoral hernia, strangulated, with previous intestinal resection and a right femoral hernioplasty. A computed tomography (CT) scan revealed an incarcerated obturator hernia on the right side containing a short segment of small intestine. The patient underwent an exploratory laparotomy and a mesh-plug hernioplasty. During follow-up, there was no evidence of recurrence or complications.
CONCLUSIONS: Obturator hernia diagnosis is challenging due to its rarity and its signs and symptoms being often unspecific. CT scan has the highest sensitivity and is the best diagnostic tool. Surgical management is the only possible treatment for obturator hernia. Awareness of this condition is essential to allow an earlier approach and attempt to mitigate the associated high morbidity and mortality rates.
Keywords: Hernia, Obturator, herniorrhaphy, Laparotomy