It is an oblique canal measuring about 3.75cm in length arising from deep inguinal ring (an oval opening ½ inch above the mid inguinal point) to superficial inguinal ring (triangular opening ½ inch above and medial to pubic tubercle.
Boundaries of inguinal canal:
· External oblique muscle
· Conjoined tendon
· Fascia transversalis
· Conjoined tendon
· Inguinal ligament
· Internal oblique muscle
· Transverses abdominis muscle
Spermatic cord (males):
In male the spermatic cord passes through the inguinal canal. The spermatic contents are:
i. Vas deference
ii. Artery of vas deference
iii. Testicular artery
iv. Testicular vein
v. Testicular lymph vessels
vi. Cremasteric artery
vii. Autonomic nerves
viii. Process vaginalis
ix. Genital branch of genitofemoral nerve
In females the inguinal canal contains the round ligament of uterus.
1. Inguinal hernia:
A. Indirect (oblique) inguinal hernia:
It is common in young. The hernia will protrude through the deep inguinal ring transverses the inguinal canal and becomes superficial through the superficial inguinal ring.
Types of indirect inguinal hernia:
The hernia is limited to inguinal canal.
The hernia is extended to the scrotum.
c) Complete (scrotal):
Again the contents extend into the scrotum but they can’t be separated from the scrotal contents.
B. Direct inguinal hernia:
It is more common in old. The hernia protrudes through the posterior abdominal wall (thru fascia transversalis).
Types of direct inguinal hernia:
The hernia extends to scrotum.
There are two sacs because the inferior epigastric artery splits it, one sac become medial to the epigastric artery and one to the lateral.
Ø Lump (swelling) in inguinal region
Ø If intestine is present in the hernia so gurgling sound will be produced
Difference b/w direct and indirect inguinal hernia:
i. Direct inguinal hernia is common in elderly while indirect inguinal hernia is common in young age.
ii. Direct inguinal hernia is easily reducible while indirect inguinal hernia isn’t easily reducible.
iii. Chances of obstruction are more in indirect hernia as compared to direct hernia.
iv. Cough impulse is positive when deep inguinal ring is obliterated (pressed on thumb)
Truss is advised which can’t cure the disease but prevent further progression.
i. In children Herniotomy is the standard procedure.
ii. In adults there are different procedures;
a. Lytle procedure
b. Darning repair
d. Bassini repair
Note: In surgery they reduce the contents. The remove the excess part of the sac, the facial and muscle layers are repaired.