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About 200 million people in the world have some form of thyroid disease.Thyroid disorders for the most part are treatable; however, untreated thyroid disease can produce serious results in other parts of the body. Improved public awareness and understanding of thyroid disorders will enable patients and their families to cope more effectively with the sometimes disturbing course of thyroid illness. In this way individuals will also be better equipped to play a role in alerting their physicians to a suspected thyroid condition that may otherwise be difficult to diagnose in the sometimes slowly developing initial phases.

Prior to the advent of the laparoscopic (key hole) approach which led to a renewed world wide interest in hernia repair, most surgeons were performing a standard Bassini hernia repair. This involved stitching of tissues under tension. When the results of this procedure were critically examined it was found that there was an unacceptably high recurrence rate. The Bassini hernia repair was effective and efficient in 80% of patients but there were many patients troubledby recurrence of hernia and pain after surgery. There was a tendency to treat hernia repair as a relatively minor operation. Because the procedure was so well established in the minds of surgeons and because of the absence of controversy about the established method of repair, there was little pressure for change. The extended use of laparoscopy for general surgery led to recognition of the fact that it was feasible to insert a sheet of mesh into the preperitoneal space by laparoscopy. It thus became possible to perform a procedure traditionally reserved for recurrent hernias for the treatment of all groin hernias. The procedure was also possible without the need for an extensive operative dissection of the abdominal muscles that was used previously.

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