A hernia occurs when there is a tear or weakness in the muscle layers of the abdomen. This allows the intestines to push forward into the gap. Usually the person feels some discomfort, and may notice an egg-shaped swelling. In a few cases, the muscle layers may clamp down on the protruding intestine, and cut off its oxygen supply. This can result in death, if medical help is not readily available. Hernias are more common in men than women, and are often related to lifting heavy materials. Although most hernias are not a serious threat to health, they usually get worse over time. The only cure is surgery to repair the cut, tear or weakness. As with any surgery, time in hospital is usually required for recovery.
This proved to be a problem in Canada during World War II. Many young men were declared unfit for military service because they had hernias. During the war, there was a shortage of doctors and beds for hernia repair. A Toronto doctor, Dr. Edward Shouldice, decided to address this problem. He personally operated on seventy of these young men, using a technique of his own. This “Shouldice Technique” allowed the patients a quicker recovery time than the usual method. It also had a much lower rate of complications and failures. After the war, Dr. Shouldice opened his own hernia clinic for the public. In 1953, a second hospital was started in Thornhill, just north of Toronto, and today all surgery is done there. The Shouldice Hospital is located on a beautiful piece of land with a valley on one side and a golf course on the other.
The large grounds have wonderful gardens and flowering trees. There are nature paths for patients to walk on. The building itself is not a regular hospital, but more like a hotel or residence, where patients can play the piano, shoot pool, play shuffleboard, or practice their putting. The hospital now has 89 beds, and an average of 30 hernia operations are performed daily. Since all the surgeons are specialists, their level of skill is very high, and less than 1% of operations need to be corrected. (The worldwide rate of failure is around 20%.) For patients, the good news is that everything at the hospital is directed to repairing their hernia, and aiding their recovery as quickly as possible.
The staff encourages its patients to walk and exercise within four or five hours of surgery. Patients usually stay on for several more days, until they are fully recovered and ready to go home. Shouldice’s best advertisements are his satisfied customers. Hernia patients come not only from Canada and the United States, but also from many countries of the world to receive the best possible treatment. Shouldice remains the most famous hospital in the world devoted entirely to the repair and treatment of hernias.
the medical condition in which an organ pushes through its covering wall, usu. when the bowel is pushed through the stomach wall
he has a hernia
the part of your body between your chest and legs which contains your stomach, bowels etc
the long tube in your body through which food passes after it leaves your stomach
to stick out from a place or through a surface:
He glimpsed a gun protruding from the man’s pocket.
The envelope was protruding from her bag.
1 a fixed limit or stopping point: The machine will stop when it reaches its cutoff point. (=when it has worked enough)
2 a piece of equipment for stopping or controlling the flow of water, gas, steam, etc. in a pipe —see also CUTOFFS, CUT off
relating to medicine and the treatment of disease or injury
medical researchmedical staffa medical studenta patient’s medical history (=the illnesses they have had) medical records (=which show what illnesses and treatment someone has had)
medical attention/treatment/care The injury required urgent medical attention. the medical profession (=doctors, nurses, and other people who treat people who are ill)
quickly and easily
Boats are readily available to visitors. The information is readily accessible on the Internet.
quickly, willingly, and without complaining
Jack readily agreed to help.
if something happens over time, it happens gradually during a long period
The research project will be assessed over time. Students are encouraged to consider the way language changes over time .
formal if you address a problem, you start trying to solve it
address a problem/question/issue etc
Our products address the needs of real users.
address yourself to something
Marlowe now addressed himself to the task of searching the room.
a house, especially a large or official one
the ambassador’s official residence
to use all or most of your time, effort etc in order to do something or help someone
devote your time/energy/attention etc to something He wanted to devote his energies to writing films.
devote yourself to something
She devoted herself full-time to her growing business.
to use a particular area, period of time, or amount of space for a specific purpose
devote something to something
The meeting will be devoted to health and safety issues.