Five-year results of a randomised controlled multi-centre study comparing heavy-weight knitted versus low-weight, non-woven polypropylene implants in Lichtenstein hernioplasty

Śmietański, M.; Bury, K.; Śmietańska, I.; Owczuk, R.; Paradowski, T.
October 2011
Hernia;Oct2011, Vol. 15 Issue 5, p495
Academic Journal
Background: This prospective randomised study evaluated whether non-knitted and non-woven lightweight implants can influence postoperative pain and time of return to normal activity, without increasing the recurrence rate in Lichtenstein inguinal hernioplasty. Methods: Patients were operated on in four centres, randomised blindly into two groups with respect to the mesh used: Surgimesh WN (non-woven polypropylene microfibre sheet) and heavy weight polypropylene mesh. The operation was performed according to the Lichtenstein technique. Follow-up was designed for 7 days, and 3, 6, 12 and 60 months. The objectives were to assess the incidence of early and late complications, recurrence rate, and postoperative pain. Results: A total of 220 patients were randomised; after monitoring visits (exclusion of one hospital), 202 qualified for the assessment. At 60 months, the recurrence rate did not differ statistically. Less pain on the 7th postoperative day, and at 3 months, was observed in the WN group. No other differences were observed. Conclusions: Use of a lightweight non-woven polypropylene implant is a valuable alternative to the use of knitted or woven meshes in the Lichtenstein method. Postoperative pain and recurrence were reduced at short term follow-up, but no statistical difference in recurrence rate was observed at 12 and 60 month follow-up in the patient population tested.


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