Components Separation for Abdominal Wall Reconstruction in the Recalcitrant, High-Comorbidity Patient: A Review of 311 Single-Surgeon Cases

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Abstract

Purpose

Components separation of the abdominal musculature remains a mainstay for closure of complicated midline and paramedian abdominal wall defects. The authors critically analyzed their experience with this technique to identify prognosticators affecting long-term clinical outcomes.

Methods

A retrospective review was performed of patients undergoing components separation by a single senior surgeon (J.M.R.) between 2000 and 2010. Numerous perioperative patient characteristics were collected and analyzed to determine their effects on long-term clinical outcomes. Multivariable logistic regression was used to predict hernia recurrence and other adverse clinical outcomes.

Results

A total of 311 patients were identified (male, 51.1%). Mean age was 53.1 ± 14.0 years, preoperative body mass index was 33.1 ± 8.2 kg/m2, and defect width was 11.4 ± 7.5 cm. Patients who had prior hernia repair were 97.4%, with 38.3% having prior mesh placement. Average follow-up was 2.9 ± 2.4 years. Overall hernia recurrence rate was 18.3%. Postoperative complications included seroma (9.3%), superficial wound infection (9.0%), skin dehiscence (4.82%), hematoma (3.2%), deep vein thrombos or pulmonary emolbus (3.2%), and skin flap ischemia (1.0%). Respiratory comorbidity (odds ratio, [OR], 2.02; P < 0.029), prior failed mesh repair (OR, 1.86; P < 0.045), and occurrence of any postoperative complication (OR, 2.02; P < 0.034) significantly increased the risk of eventual hernia recurrence. Preoperative body mass index was not associated with hernia recurrence (P < 0.351) or increased incidence of any aforementioned postoperative complications.

Conclusions

This study provides a comprehensive review of one of the largest single-surgeon experiences using components separation to date. Patients with respiratory comorbidities, prior failed mesh repair, and the occurrence of any postoperative complication are at significantly increased risk for hernia recurrence.

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