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Background: The aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of a hybrid approach (HA) versus laparoscopy in reducing the risk of complications related to complex adhesiolysis in incisional ventral hernia repair (IVHR). Methods: This study included 269 adult patients who underwent laparoscopic IVHR at the Oulu University Hospital, Finland during 2006-2012. Baseline, operative and postoperative data was collected and compared between the treatment groups; that is, a comparison was made between the laparoscopic approach (LA, 38 patients) and the hybrid approach (HA, 24 patients). Results: In the LA group, 11 (28.9%) patients experienced postoperative complications. There were 4 undetected enterotomies that led to major complications, reoperations and one death. In the HA group, 6 (25%) patients experienced mild and moderate complications. During adhesiolysis, 4 enterotomies occurred but were immediately sutured without any complication. Conclusion: Adhesiolysis through a minimally invasive open technique may be associated with a lower risk of undetected enterotomy in patients with complex adhesions. In IVHR, the hybrid should be considered the operative method of choice when adhesions are foreseeable.