A hernia occurs when tissue, such as part of the intestine, protrudes through a weak spot in the abdominal muscles. The resulting bulge can be painful, especially when you cough, bend over, or lift a heavy object.
A hernia isn't necessarily dangerous. It will not improve on its own and may get bigger over time. There is a chance that a hernia can become entrapped and become an emergency. Your doctor is likely to recommend surgery to fix an inguinal hernia that is painful or enlarging. Inguinal hernia repair is a common surgical procedure.