Incisional hernia after open versus laparoscopic sigmoid resection

Surg Endosc. 2008 Sep;22(9):2026-9. doi: 10.1007/s00464-008-9924-x. Epub 2008 Apr 25.


Background: Incisional hernia after open surgery is a well-known complication with an incidence of up to 20% after a 10-year period. Data regarding the long-term hernia risk after laparoscopic colonic surgery are lacking in the literature. In the present study we compared the long-term hernia incidence after laparoscopic versus open sigmoid resection.

Methods: The study included patients undergoing laparoscopic sigmoid resection in the period January 1995 to December 2004 in the eastern part of Denmark. This group was matched with a consecutive group of patients undergoing open surgery in our department in the same period. Patients were contacted by telephone, and a questionnaire was completed for each patient. If the patient was believed to have a hernia or if there was any suspicion of a hernia, a consultant surgeon examined the patient and completed the questionnaire. Factors related to the primary operation, the hernia and general risk factors were registered for all patients.

Results: A total of 201 patients answered the questionnaire (95.3%). The laparoscopy group was comprised of 58 patients and 143 patients were included in the laparotomy group. The patients had a median follow-up of 4.6 years (range 2.4-11.7 years) and 4.9 years (range 2.4-8.5 years) after laparoscopic and open surgery, respectively (P = 0.326). Incisional hernia was found in two of 58 patients (3.4%, 95% CI -1.4-7.4) in the laparoscopic surgery group compared with 21 of 143 patients (14.7%, 95% CI 8.9-20.5) in the open surgery group (P = 0.026). There were no significant differences in demographic data or the occurrence of risk factors between the two groups.

Conclusion: Laparoscopic sigmoid resection leads to a significantly lower incidence of incisional hernia compared with the open surgical technique.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Colon, Sigmoid / surgery*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hernia, Ventral / epidemiology
  • Hernia, Ventral / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Laparoscopy*
  • Laparotomy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surveys and Questionnaires