Management of Open Abdomen After Trauma Laparotomy: A Comparative Analysis of Dynamic Fascial Traction and Negative Pressure Wound Therapy Systems

  • Yifan Wang
  • Abdulaziz Alnumay
  • Tiffany Paradis
  • Andrew Beckett
  • Paola Fata
  • Kosar Khwaja
  • Tarek Razek
  • Jeremy Grushka
  • Dan L. DeckelbaumEmail author
Original Scientific Report



Management of the post-traumatic open abdomen (OA) using negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) alone is associated with low rates of primary fascial closure. The abdominal reapproximation anchor (ABRA) system exerts dynamic medial fascial traction and may work synergistically with NPWT to facilitate primary fascial closure.


Patients with an OA following trauma laparotomy between 2009 and 2018 were identified from a prospectively maintained institutional database. Patients treated with ABRA in conjunction with NPWT (ABRA) versus NPWT alone (NPWT) were compared in terms of primary fascial closure rate, number of surgeries to closure, tracheostomy duration, length of stay and incidence of entero-atmospheric fistula. Multivariable linear regression was performed to identify predictors of tracheostomy duration.


We identified 48 patients [ABRA, 12 and NPWT, 36]. The ABRA group was significantly younger (25 vs. 37 years, p = 0.027) and included a lower proportion of males (58% vs. 89%, p = 0.032). Groups were similar with respect to the incidence of hollow viscus injury, injury severity score and abdominal abbreviated injury score. Compared to the NPWT group, the ABRA group had a significantly higher rate of primary fascial closure (100% vs. 28%, p < 0.001), fewer surgeries to abdominal closure (2 vs. 2.5, p = 0.023) and shorter duration of tracheostomy (15.5 vs. 36 days, p = 0.008). There were no differences in length of stay or incidence of entero-atmospheric fistula. On multivariable linear regression, ABRA placement was an independent predictor of shorter tracheostomy duration, after adjusting for covariates (β = − 0.294, p = 0.036).


For the post-traumatic OA, ABRA coupled with NPWT achieves a higher rate of primary fascial closure compared to NPWT alone, while requiring fewer surgeries and a shorter duration of tracheostomy.


Author contributions

The study was designed by YW, AA, TP, AB, PF, KK, TR, JG and DD; data were collected by YW, AA and TP; data were analysed by YW, AA, JG and DD; data were interpreted by YW, AA, JG and DD; manuscript was written by YW, AA, JG and DD; and critical revision was carried out by YW, AA, TP, AB, PF, KK, TR, JG and DD.



Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.


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Copyright information

© Société Internationale de Chirurgie 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yifan Wang
    • 1
  • Abdulaziz Alnumay
    • 1
  • Tiffany Paradis
    • 1
  • Andrew Beckett
    • 1
  • Paola Fata
    • 1
  • Kosar Khwaja
    • 1
  • Tarek Razek
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jeremy Grushka
    • 1
  • Dan L. Deckelbaum
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Division of Trauma Surgery, McGill University Health CentreMcGill UniversityMontrealCanada
  2. 2.Centre for Global SurgeryMcGill UniversityMontrealCanada

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