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01.03.2012 | Ausgabe 3/2012

World Journal of Surgery 3/2012

Planned Hernia Repair and Late Abdominal Wall Reconstruction

World Journal of Surgery > Ausgabe 3/2012
Ari Leppäniemi, Erkki Tukiainen


Planned ventral hernia is a management strategy in which the abdominal fascial layer has been left unclosed and the viscera are covered only with original or grafted skin. Leaving the fascia open can be deliberate or unavoidable and most commonly results from staged repair of the abdominal wall due to trauma, peritonitis, pancreatitis, abdominal vascular emergencies, or abdominal compartment syndrome. The abdominal wall defects can be categorized as type I or II defects depending on whether there is intact, stable skin coverage. In defects with intact skin coverage, the most commonly used methods are the components separation technique and a prosthetic repair, sometimes used in combination. The advantages of the components separation technique is the ability to close the linea alba at the midline, creating a better functional result than a repair with inert mesh. Although the reherniation risk seems higher after components separation, the risk of infection is considerably lower. With a type II defect, with absent or unstable skin coverage, fascial repair alone is inadequate. Of the more complex reconstruction techniques, the use of a free tensor fasciae latae (TFL) flap utilizing a saphenous vein arteriovenous loop is the most promising. The advantages of the TFL flap include constant anatomy of the pedicle, a strong fascial layer, large-caliber vessels matching the size of the AV loop, and the ability to use large flaps (up to 20 × 35 cm). Whatever technique is used, the repair of complex abdominal wall defects requires close collaboration with plastic and abdominal surgeons, which is best managed in specialized centers.

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