Preventive midline laparotomy closure with a new bioabsorbable mesh: An experimental study

Manuel López-Cano, Manel Armengol, Maria Teresa Quiles, Alex Biel, Janice Velasco, Pere Huguet, Aleix Mestre, Lluís María Delgado, Francesc Xavier Gil, Maria Antonia Arbós

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19 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Incisional hernia formation is one of the most frequent complications of midline laparotomies requiring reoperation. The aim of this study was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of prophylactically placing a biodegradable mesh within the incision site at closure in a rat model. Methods: A 4-cm full-thick midline laparotomy was made in Sprague-Dawley rats along the linea alba and closed by inserting a commercially available web of synthetic polymers (polyglycolic acid-trimethylene carbonate) that are slowly degraded by the body. Host tissue reaction was evaluated ex vivo and compared with that obtained in suture-only-treated rats. Specimens were harvested at 1, 3, and 6 mo after surgery and divided for histologic and zymographic analyses and uniaxial material testing. A group of intact nonoperated animals were included to serve as a reference. Results: The excised tissue explants revealed that the performance of the synthetic device was good and resulted in enhanced fibroproliferation, gelatinolytic activity, and angiogenesis within the repair site as compared with the suture-only procedure. Lastly, tensile strength augmented over the suture-only condition. Conclusions: The preventive introduction of an absorbable mesh stimulates new tissue ingrowth and performance relative to suture repair without prosthesis, probably contributing to eventually reinforce the tension line. These results have a clinical potential in abdominal wall closure, especially in patients with multiple risk factors such as those treated for aortic reconstructive surgery, without the short- and long-term complications related to permanent grafts. However, data are preliminary and should be confirmed with longer follow-ups. © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)160-169
JournalJournal of Surgical Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2013


  • Absorbable mesh
  • Midline laparotomy
  • Prophylactic reinforcement
  • Soft tissue biomechanics


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