Any lump on the body can be a cause of concern and should be checked by a health care professional. One of the causes of a lump in the groin, near an incision, on the thigh, or in the belly button area is a hernia. Other reasons can be swollen lymph nodes or a cyst.

A hernia is formed when there is a break or weakness in the strong layer between the abdominal wall and the muscle (fascia). This causes a sac to develop in the lining, creating a bulge or lump.

There are five main types of hernias; some of them can be present at birth.

5 Types Of Hernias

The groin area is not the only place that you will find a lump that could be a hernia; some babies and toddlers lump the belly button area. Hernias also can be found on the thigh. These are types of hernias:

  • Inguinal – This type of hernia may resemble a swollen lymph node in the groin area. The bulge may go into the scrotum.
  • Hiatal – With this hernia, it is the one that most people are familiar with. It occurs on the upper portion of the stomach.
  • Umbilical – Causing a lump in the belly button area, this type is seen in infants and may or may not be noticeable at birth.
  • Femoral – It causes a lump to form on the upper part of the thigh.
  • Incision – This one occurs near a current or old incision in the abnormal wall.

The Femoral type is more common in women, and the inguinal type is more common in men.

Learn About – Inguinal (Groin) Lymph Nodes

What Are The Causes

Some hernias are present at birth, but no lump is evident until adulthood. Some people may have a family history of hernias and may be more susceptible to them. Activities that can cause one include the following:

  • Heavy lifting
  • Smoking
  • Overexertion
  • Extended crying

Health conditions that can cause a hernia include the following:

  • Chronic straining during bowel movements
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Chronic cough
  • Obesity
  • Malnutrition
  • Undescended testicle
  • Enlarged prostate that causes straining during urination
  • Chronic pain in a child that leads to crying

Some hernias can be prevented by using the upper body for lifting, maintain a healthy weight, avoid constipation, pain relief, and having related health issues treated.

Learn About – Groin Swollen Lymph Nodes

Understanding The Symptoms

One of the first symptoms of a hernia may be a pain, and one of the early signs will be a lump. A hernia can cause pain that increases during exertion, staining, or lifting. Often they have no symptoms, which is why they often go undiagnosed.

Strangulated Hernia

When there is severe pain, it may be a symptom of a strangulated hernia, which will require immediate care and surgery. This occurs when the tissue becomes lodged in the hole, and the blood supply stops. (Strangulated Hernia – It is a severe condition.


A Hernia may be left to heal on its own and monitored, or it may need surgery. Only a health care professional can determine the best treatment for a specific type of hernia.