Does Full Wound Rupture following Median Pilonidal Closure Alter Long-Term Recurrence Rate?

Med Princ Pract. 2015;24(6):571-7. doi: 10.1159/000437361. Epub 2015 Sep 4.


Objective: The purpose of this study was to examine the recurrence rate of wound rupture in primary pilonidal sinus disease (PSD) after median closure.

Subjects and methods: A total of 583 patients from the German military cohort were interviewed. We compared the choice of surgical therapy, wound dehiscence (if present) and long-term recurrence-free survival for patients with primary open treatment, marsupialization and primary median treatment (closed vs. secondary open, respectively). Actuarial recurrence rate was determined using the Kaplan-Meier calculation with a follow-up of up to 20 years after primary PSD surgery.

Results: Patients with excision followed by primary open wound treatment showed a significantly lower 5- than 10-year recurrence rate (8.3 vs. 11.2%) compared to the patients with primary midline closure (17.4 vs. 20.5%, p = 0.03). The 20-year recurrence rate was 28% in primary open wound treatment versus 44% in primary midline closure without wound rupture. In contrast to these findings, long-term recurrence rates following secondary open wound treatment (12.2% at 5 years vs. 17.1% at 10 years) tended to be higher (although not significantly, p = 0.57) compared to primary open treatment (8.3% at 5 years vs. 11.2% at 10 years). There was no statistical difference in long-term recurrence rates between secondary open and primary midline closure (p = 0.7). Hence, despite only a short wound closure time experienced before wound rupture, the patient does not fully benefit from an open wound treatment in terms of recurrence rate.

Conclusion: The postoperative pilonidal sinus wound rupture of primary midline closures did not significantly increase the 5- and 10-year long-term recurrence rates compared to uneventfully healing primary midline closures.

MeSH terms

  • Germany
  • Humans
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Male
  • Military Personnel
  • Pilonidal Sinus / surgery*
  • Recurrence
  • Surgical Wound Dehiscence / epidemiology*
  • Surgical Wound Infection / epidemiology*
  • Wound Healing*