Purpose: The aim of this study was to identify potential parameters as predictors for seroma formation after incisional hernia mesh repair.
Methods: The incidence of postoperative seroma was determined prospectively in 37 patients who underwent incisional hernia repair with lightweight polypropylene-polyglactin composite mesh (Vypro-II®). Postoperative seroma manifestation was related to patient characteristics (gender, age, BMI, comorbidity, nicotine abuse) and to preoperative serum concentration of total protein, albumin, interleukin-1-receptor-antagonist (IL-1-RA), propeptid-III-procollagen, hyaluronan and fibronectin. Ultrasound investigation was performed on postoperative days 1, 2, 3, 8 and 10.
Results: Ten patients (27%) developed seroma with a mean volume of 77 ± 88 ml. Higher BMI correlated with increased seroma formation (P = 0.038). In patients with seroma, total protein (67 ± 7 vs 72 ± 4 g/l; P = 0.037), albumin (42 ± 3 vs 40 ± 4 g/l; P = 0.018) and IL-1-RA (1.4 ± 1 vs 0.8 ± 0.6 U/ml; P = 0.048) exhibited significantly altered serum concentrations in comparison to patients without seroma formation. No significant differences were seen in any other parameters.
Conclusions: High BMI, lowered preoperative serum concentration of total protein and albumin, and high serum concentration of IL-1-RA are related to an elevated risk for postoperative seroma formation.