Hernia after Laparoscopic Appendectomy

Dear Ask The Doctor:  About a week ago I had my appendix removed. But I'm a little confused, before getting released 1 doctor told me not to carry any books and not to where a backpack, another told me it would be okay. I have a friend who had an appendectomy and somehow got a hernia after, but I don't know how much he was straining himself. So I'm hoping for some clarification. Can I carry books in my arms if so about what weight? Can I carry a backpack? Am I at an increased risk for a hernia? Additional Information: 17 years old, female, laproscopic appendectomy, 1 week after surgery, no health problems 

Dear Patient:  It is highly unlikely that you will develop a hernia after laparoscopic surgery. It is likely that your friend who developed a hernia had an open appendectomy which is traditionally how the appendix is removed. This involves making an incision in the lower right abdomen about 3 inches long. In Laparoscopic surgey much smaller incisios are used which reduces the lieklihood of developing a hernia. You should be able to go about all your normal activities including carrying your books and backpack however you should avoid strenous exercise for the next few weeks.

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