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Tensile strength of mesh fixation methods in laparoscopic incisional hernia repair

Background: Fixation of the mesh is crucial for the successful laparoscopic repair of incisional hernias. In the present experimental study, we used a pig model to compare the tensile strengths of mesh fixation with helical titanium coils (tackers) and transabdominal wall sutures. Methods: Thirty-six full-thickness specimens (5 × 7 cm) of the anterior abdominal wall of nine pig cadavers were randomized for fixation of a polypropylene mesh (7 × 7 cm) by either tackers or transabdominal wall sutures. The number of fixation points varied from one to five per 7-cm tissue length, with distances between fixation points of 2.3, 1.8, 1.4, and 1.2 cm, respectively. The force required to disrupt the mesh fixation (tensile strength) was measured by a dynamometer. Statistical analysis was performed using the Wilcoxon test and the Spearman rank correlation test. Results: The mean tensile strength of mesh fixation by transabdominal sutures was significantly greater than that by tackers for each number of fixation points: 67 N vs 28 N for a single fixation point (p <0.001), 115 N vs 42 N for two fixation points (p <0.001), 150 N vs 63 N for three fixation points (p <0.05), 151 N vs 73 N for four fixation points (p <0.05), and 150 N vs 82 N for five fixation points (p <0.05). Increasing the number of fixation points over three per 7 cm (distance between fixation points of 1.8 cm) did not improve tensile strength. Conclusion: The tensile strength of transabdominal sutures is up to 2.5 times greater than the tensile strength of tackers. Therefore, the use of transabdominal sutures for mesh fixation appears to be preferable for laparoscopic incisional hernia repair.

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Riet, M., Steenwijk, P., Kleinrensink, G. et al. Tensile strength of mesh fixation methods in laparoscopic incisional hernia repair . Surg Endosc 16, 1713–1716 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00464-001-9202-7

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  • Tensile Strength
  • Incisional Hernia
  • Polypropylene Mesh
  • Laparoscopic Repair
  • Anterior Abdominal Wall