Background and purpose: A retrospective study was conducted to identify the reasons for recurrence following endoscopic total extraperitoneal (TEP) repair of inguinal hernias and to develop a strategy to prevent recurrence.
Method: Between January 1996 and December 2001, 1193 TEP hernia repairs were performed in 694 patients. Following reduction of the hernia sac and dissection of the preperitoneal space up to the psoas muscles laterally, a Prolene mesh (15 x 15 cm) was placed. The mesh was fixed medially to the Cooper ligament with two or three spiral tacks. In six patients, the hernia recurred following endoscopic TEP repair within the same period. Four of these patients elected to undergo laparoscopic transabdominal preperitoneal (TAPP) repair of the recurrent hernia.
Results: Medial recurrences developed in three of the four patients because of medial displacement of the mesh. One patient was found to have a missed indirect hernia sac. All the patients who underwent laparoscopic TAPP repair had an uneventful recovery and are well at follow-up.
Conclusion: In addition to medial fixation of the mesh to the Cooper ligament, complete proximal dissection of the peritoneum from the spermatic cord and additional fixation of the mesh to the anterior abdominal wall, with careful avoidance of possible injury to the adjacent nerves, may prevent recurrences.