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Laparoscopic ventral hernia repair (LVHR) is widely used to manage ventral hernias, but predictors of hernia recurrence have been poorly investigated. This retrospective study investigated the influence of common risk factors on hernia recurrence. Data from 146 consecutive, unselected patients who underwent LVHR between 2000 and 2006 were collected. Demographic, clinical, and perioperative parameters were analyzed to identify predictable risk factors for hernia recurrence. Both univariate and multivariate Cox's regression analysis were employed. The overall recurrence rate was 8% (12 patients) after an average follow-up of 45 months. On univariate analysis, smoking (P=0.01) and earlier repair (P<0.00) were significantly different in recurred patients. However, only earlier repair was an independent predictor of multivariate Cox's regression analysis (hazard ratio 0.085, 95% confidence interval: 0.020-0.355; P=0.001). LVHR is a safe technique to repair ventral hernias. However, smokers with earlier failed repair attempts have a higher risk of recurrence.