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10.02.2020 | Original Article

Suturable mesh better resists early laparotomy failure in a cyclic ball-burst model

C. J. Scheiber, S. S. Kurapaty, S. M. Goldman, C. L. Dearth, P. C. Liacouras, J. M. Souza
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The small bites surgical technique supported by the STITCH trial has been touted as a strategy for preventing early laparotomy dehiscence through greater force distribution at the suture–tissue interface. However, this hernia prevention strategy requires an alteration in the standard closure technique that has not been widely adopted in the USA. This study seeks to determine whether incorporating a mid-weight polypropylene mesh material into a hollow-bore surgical suture material will effectively increase the force distribution at the suture–tissue interface and potentially help prevent early laparotomy dehiscence in an ex vivo model.


A cyclic stress ball-burst model was used to compare suturable mesh (0 DuraMesh™) to conventional suture. After midline laparotomy, 28 porcine abdominal wall specimens were closed with either 0 DuraMesh™ or #1 polydioxanone double-loop suture. A custom 3D-printed ball-burst test apparatus was used to fatigue the repair on a MTS Bionix Load Frame. The tissue was repetitively stressed at a physiological force of 15–120 N cycled at a rate of 0.25 Hz for a total of 1000 repetitions, followed by a load to failure, and the maximal force was recorded.


The mean maximal force at suture pull-through was significantly higher (p < 0.0095) in the 0 DuraMesh suture group (mean: 850.1 N) compared to the 1 PDS group (mean: 714.7 N).


This ex vivo study suggests that using rational suture design to improve force distribution at the suture–tissue interface may be a viable strategy for preventing the suture pull-through that drives incisional hernia.

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