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Spigelian Hernia

Spigelian hernia is a less common hernia in the abdominal wall, slightly to the side of the upper abdomen. They are repaired in the same way as the majority of hernias with tension-free mesh reinforcement. Early symptoms may include a bulge appearing to the side and below your navel and a certain amount of discomfort that may become more painful when lifting heavy objects or through coughing.


A Spigelian hernia is a rare type of hernia that occurs in the abdominal wall, slightly to the side of the upper abdomen. It can be repaired using tension-free mesh reinforcement, like the majority of other hernias.  The most common sign of a Spigelian Hernia is a bulge to the side or below your navel that may become more painful when lifting heavy objects or when coughing.


This type of hernia protrudes through a weakness in the muscle fibres of the abdominal wall.

Factors that can contribute towards a Spigelian Hernia include:

  • Obesity
  • Sports activity
  • Coughing
  • Heavy lifting

Spigelian Hernia

Figure 1. Anatomy of abdominal wall.

Linea semilunaris (spigelian); 2: Rectus abdominis muscle;
3: Transversus abdominal muscle; 4: Spigelian aponeurosis; 5: Linea semicircularis

Spigelian hernia symptoms

A Spigelian Hernia can be difficult to diagnose as there often aren’t any physical symptoms.

Common symptoms:

  • Poor bowel function
  • Constipation
  • Dull ache in the abdominal area
  • Recurring pain especially during activity

Diagnosis of spigelian hernia

Spigelian Hernias  tricky to detect. As they tend to have a narrow neck, are usually quite small and are situated under the aponeurosis (a sheet of fibrous tissue), they are often not often seen or felt (by doctors). Therefore an ultrasound or CT-scan may be required to confirm of the diagnosis. A consultant can then begin Spigelian Hernia repair.

Spigelian hernia treatment

The Spigelian Hernia repair procedure can be carried out under local or general anaesthetic. Surgery is usually required to treat this type of hernia as it can be prone to strangulation. The tension-free open mesh procure that has been perfected by London Hernia consultants over many years, can be used.

Is no treatment an option?

Many hernias do not hurt so the temptation is to ignore them. However, failing to get medical advice can be damaging and is not recommended. If left the hernia will grow and discomfort and pain, even if negligible to start with, will intensify.

Book Spigelian hernia appointment

To ask a question or book an appointment you can contact us by calling 020 3370 1014 or by emailing londonhernia@hje.org.uk.

Hernia Clinic

The Hernia Unit provides comprehensive diagnosis and treatment of all hernia types and can offer a number of surgery options depending on the individual needs of each patient.

A patient speaking to a receptionist

Patient information

Our Hospital is renowned for providing exemplary levels of care across more than 90 services. From orthopaedics, to urology, ENT, as well as a private GP practice and our urgent care centre, Casualty First, our services are led by some of London’s leading Consultants. For more information, and to find a service suitable for your care, find out more about the services that we offer.

Make an enquiry

If you have any questions relating to treatment options or pricing information then get in touch with us by filling out one of our contact boxes or giving us a call on 020 3370 1014.

Our Appointments Team have a dedicated and caring approach to finding you the earliest appointment possible with the best specialist.

 If you are self-paying you don’t need a referral from your GP for a consultation. You can simply refer yourself* and book an appointment.

If you have medical insurance (e.g. Bupa, Axa PPP, Aviva), you will need to contact your insurer to get authorisation for any treatment and, in most cases, you will require a referral letter from your GP.

If you do not have a GP, then we have an in-house private GP practice that you can use. Alternatively we can suggest the most appropriate course of action for you to take, given your location and individual circumstance.

*Please note – for investigations such as X-rays and MRI’s a referral will be required. However, we may be able to arrange this for you through our on-site private GP.

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