Laparoscopic versus open ventral hernia repair in obese patients: a long-term follow-up

Dvir Froylich*, Miriam Segal, Adam Weinstein, Kamal Hatib, Eitan Shiloni, David Hazzan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Background: Ventral hernia repair in obese patients has a high perioperative morbidity and recurrence. The laparoscopic approach may reduce those rates. This study compares those outcomes following laparoscopic ventral hernia repair (LVHR) with the standard open approach (OVHR) in obese patients. Methods: A retrospective review of patients with a BMI > 30 kg/m2 that had undergone ventral hernia repair (VHR) between 2004 and 2012 was included. Demographics, perioperative complications and recurrence rates were compared between the two approaches. Hernia size was divided into three categories (small, medium and large). Physical examination and CT imaging mainly evaluated recurrences. Results: A total of 186 patients that underwent VHR were included, 35 patients had LVHR. Groups did not differ in terms of age, gender, ASA score, BMI and in rates of primary or incisional ventral hernia repair. The laparoscopic repairs were performed on significantly larger hernias (48.6 vs. 28.9 % categorized as large, p = 0.02). The operative time was significantly longer in the laparoscopic repair (102 vs. 67 min, p < 0.01). Overall, perioperative complications following LVHR and OVHR were 17.1 versus 20.5 % (p = 0.53). Wound-related complications were lower in the LVHR group (5.7 vs. 15.8 %, p = 0.09). After a mean follow-up of 58 months, recurrence rates in the laparoscopic and open approaches were 20.0 versus 27.1 % (p = 0.28), respectively. Advanced age was found to be a significantly protector from recurrence (OR −0.03; 95 % CI 0.96–0.01, p = 0.01). OVHR carries an odds ratio of 2.7 (95 % CI 0.88–8.2, p = 0.07) for recurrence compared with OVHR. Conclusions: The risk of recurrence after VHR in obese patients is high. Laparoscopic approach offers a better perioperative and recurrence outcome. We believe that change in those outcomes is possible through weight loss procedures, but may need further studies to be conducted in the form of prospective randomized trials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)670-675
Number of pages6
JournalSurgical Endoscopy and Other Interventional Techniques
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Abdominal
  • Bariatric
  • Hernia
  • Obesity


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