A soft swelling at the umbilicus (navel) caused by protrusion of the abdominal contents through a weak area of the abdominal wall. Umbilical hernias, which a widespread in newborn babies, occurs twice as often in boys as in girls. The swelling increases in size when the baby cries, and can cause discomfort. Umbilical hernias often disappear by themselves at the age of two. If a hernia is still present after this age, surgery may be required
Umbilical hernias occasionally develop in adults, particularly in women after childbirth. Surgery may be necessary for a large, persistent or disfiguring hernia.