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Hernia Medical Advice

If you are experiencing sudden, intense pain in your abdomen or groin that you suspect may be a hernia, contact your doctor immediately or visit the Emergency Dept. This site is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Only your surgeon can diagnose and appropriately treat your hernia.


Inguinal Hernia Open Source Data

Did you know that NHS England publishes information on hospital quality and Inguinal hernia operations within England?

If you are considering your hernia repair option in the UK this is a good place to start. Even though data is specific to England, patients in other regions can get some insight into the best choice for your operation and metrics to compare against. We looked at the data to see what interesting things we could find. An example of the published open-source data can be seen here... or you can simply visualise it as a map.
 

About the data set used:

  • Data is only published for England and excludes Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.
  • Not all hospitals publish all the data that they should. The absence of data does not mean that Inguinal Hernia Ops
    are not done but more likely no data is available from a hospital.
  • Hospitals that did not publish inguinal hernia-related data sets were omitted.
  • Data was collected on 15th December 2015.

Where can you go to get your Inguinal Operation done?

There are 793 Hospitals in England, but only 168 publish statistics on Hernia Operations and this excludes for the most part all private clinics and hospitals. Hernia Operations fall under the 'General Surgery' category which despite its name is not done at every hospital.  If multiple hospitals are within the same NHS Trust the Operation number is allocated across Hospitals in the catchment zone so this again can make some Trusts look busier than others.

What can we tell about the Hernia statistics that are published?

We consider the number of hernia operations as a coarse proxy for quality and local competence in the absence of other quality metrics.  'Outcomes often depend on the technical expertise of surgeons,' *  says Guy Voeller, professor of surgery at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.  General surgeons may perform 20 hernia operations a year compared with 300 or more for a specialist. (*Source)  
So Hospitals or Trusts that perform a higher number of operations should be centres of excellence. Simply put they practice their particular hernia repair technique more often and should have better patient outcomes. We find that 100+ Operations per year could be a good proxy for competency. If your local hospital is doing under 100 operations a year you may want to consider an alternative centre.

Inguinal Hernia Operations done in 2014 by Hospital
Average across all Hospitals that published 428
Lowest Number published 67
Highest Number published 1055
Total Published Operations 72,024
 

The total number of hernia operations is considerably under-reported, no statistics for private hospitals and clinics are available, although they are clearly offering hernia operations. 

Waiting Time (Days) for Inguinal Hernia Operation post first Out-Patient appointment
Average across all Hospitals that published 24
Lowest Number published 0
Highest Number published 79
 

Waiting time (days) above does not cover referral time from the GP to a consultant, the figure above is the time in days from first referral
to operation day. On average you will be waiting just under a month for your operation across NHS England.

Hospital Ratings

Hospital Rating for Hospitals publishing  Inguinal Hernia Operations
Average across all Hospitals that published  3.88 / 5.0
Minimum  Published                   2.57
Maximum Waiting Time Published   4.83
 

Hospitals are rated by patients on a score of 0-5 where 5 is the highest possible score. As the number of ratings greatly changes
the statistics only Hospitals with 50+ ratings were checked. This rating score covers
cleanliness and patient satisfaction. 

Highest Scoring NHS Hospitals for Hernia Operations

Criteria for selection:  Selected from Hospitals that published data on Hernia Operations.

  • Upper Quartile of Hernia Operations - using quantity as a  coarse proxy for expertise
  • Sorted by Patient Waiting Time then Patient Rating (out of 5)
Hospital Name Operations per Year Waiting Time Days Patient Rating 0-5
Furness General Hospital 607 0 4.18
Worcestershire Royal Hospital 636 0 3.79
Pinderfields Hospital 630 0 3.46
Doncaster Royal infirmary 761 0 3.22
Berwick Infirmary 726 0 3.20
North Tyneside General Hospital 726 3 3.71
Bassetlaw Hospital 761 3 3.71
Edgware Community Hospital 899 4 2.2
Royal Free Hospital 899 5 3.7
Hexham General Hospital 726 6 4.61

Lowest scoring NHS Hospitals for Hernia Operations

Criteria for selection: Selected from Hospitals that published data on Hernia Operations.

  • Lower Quartile of Hernia Operations - using quantity as a  coarse proxy for expertise
  • Sorted by Patient Waiting Time then Patient Rating (out of 5)
Hospital Name Operations per Year Waiting Time Days Patient Rating 0-5
Southport and Formby District General Hospital 239 65 3.1
Wythenshawe Hospital 187 60 3.95
The Great Western Hospital 263 57 3.81
Cumberland Infirmary 318 50 3.67
Kettering General Hospital 216 49 3.91
Yeovil District Hospital 186 44 3.93
Skipton General Hospital 185 44 4.83
Huddersfield Royal Infirmary 311 43 3.71

The Hospital Data set in CSV format can be downloaded here.