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Is Postoperative Chronic Pain Syndrome Higher with Mesh Repair of Inguinal Hernia?

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Chronic postoperative pain has been associated with mesh repair in meta-analysis of clinical trials. We compared the incidence of early complications, recurrence, and chronic pain syndrome in anatomic and mesh repairs in 200 patients. We defined chronic pain syndrome as pain in the inguinal area more than 3 months after inguinal hernia repair, patient referral to pain management, or necessity of a secondary procedure for pain control. The mean follow-up time was 4 years and 2 months for anatomic repair and 3 years and 7 months for mesh repair. The clinical outcomes did not reveal a significant disparity between the 100 consecutive patients who had mesh repair versus the 100 patients who had anatomic repair with regard to the incidence of superficial wound infection (0 vs 2%, P = 0.497), testicular swelling (12 vs 7%, P = 0.335), hematoma (1 vs 0%, P = 0.99), recurrence (3 vs 2%, P = 0.99), or chronic postoperative pain (4 vs 1%, P = 0.369). The anatomic procedure without mesh should continue to be offered to patients who have an initial inguinal hernia repair.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: From the Long Beach Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Long Beach, California, USA

Publication date: October 1, 2010

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  • The Southeastern Surgical Congress owns and publishes The American Surgeon monthly. It is the official journal of the Congress and the Southern California Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, which all members receive each month. The journal brings up to date clinical advances in surgical knowledge in a popular reference format. In addition to publishing papers presented at the annual meetings of the associated organizations, the journal publishes selected unsolicited manuscripts. If you have a manuscript you'd like to see published in The American Surgeon select "Information for Authors" from the Related Information options below. A Copyright Release Form must accompany all manuscripts submitted.
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