Purpose: The goal of this study was to investigate whether locally available Nylon mosquito net might be a useful alternative to expensive commercial mesh implants for hernia repair, a clinical randomized double-blind study was performed.
Materials and methods: Over a period of 3 months 35 patients with a total of 40 inguinal hernias were randomized for hernia repair with either a commercial graft (Ultrapro) or a piece of sterilized 100% Nylon mesh available as mosquito net in most African village markets. The surgeons' comfort in handling the meshes, the incidence of complications, and the patients' quality of life before and 30 days after hernia repair were evaluated. In addition, the costs of the two materials were compared.
Results: There was no significant difference in the clinical short-term outcome of the hernia treatment or the surgeons' comfort in handling the two different materials. The price of the locally bought Nylon mesh was 0.0043 US dollars as compared to 108 US dollars for the commercial mesh.
Conclusions: In situations where superior results of hernia repair depend on the use of a mesh prosthesis but where commercial material is not available or affordable, the use of Nylon mosquito net may be an alternative. Further studies with a larger number of patients and longer follow-up are justified and recommended.