RESEARCH – October 2012

The results of incisional hernia open mesh repair in Tartu University Hospital


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Background. The allomaterial used in the plasty of abdominal wall hernias has been associated with strong foreign body reaction which may lead to constant dyscomfort and chronic pain imparing significantly the quality of life. The aim of this study was to assess the occurrence of chronic pain, foreign body feeling and hernia recurrence after alloplasty, as well as to evaluate the effect of alloplasty on patients’ quality of life.

Methods. Alloplasty was done to patients with midline incisional hernia. At follow-up the presence of pain during different activities was measured on a visual analogue scale and the occurence of foreign body feeling was evaluated. The quality of life was assessed using the SF36 questionnaire. All patients underwent clinical investigation regarding possible hernia recurrence.

Results. Chronic pain occurred in 32.5 % of the patients at the sixth postoperative month and in 27.9 % at the third postoperative year. The foreign body feeling was reported by 25 % of the patients at the sixth postoperative month and by 25.6 % at the third postoperative year. The quality of life scores for different domains improved by the sixth postoperative month. Hernia recurrence occurred in 6.5 % of the patients at the third postoperative year.

Conclusions. Chronic pain and the foreign body feeling are frequent complaints after alloplasty. Considering the low recurrence rate, onlay alloplasty appears to be a good surgical method for correcting midline incisional hernias. Improvement in the quality of life following such an operation allows to conclude that in the case of symptomatic incisional hernias elective surgical treatment should be applied at the first opportunity.