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Quality of Life and Surgical Outcome 1 Year After Open and Laparoscopic Incisional Hernia Repair: PROLOVE: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

Annals of Surgery 2016 Februrary
OBJECTIVE: Patients suffering from an incisional hernia after abdominal surgery have an impaired quality of life (QoL). Surgery aims to improve QoL with a minimum risk of further complications. The aim was to analyze QoL, predictors for outcome, including recurrence and reoperation rates during the first postoperative year.

METHODS: In a randomized controlled trial comparing laparoscopic and open mesh repair, 133 patients were assessed preoperatively and after 1 year with regard to QoL using the Short Form-36 (SF-36), visual analog scale (pain, movement limitation, and fatigue), and questions addressing abdominal wall complaints. Factors concerning recurrence, reoperations, satisfaction, and improved QoL were analyzed.

RESULTS: A total of 124 patients remained for analysis. All SF-36 scores except mental composite score increased, reaching and maintaining levels of the Swedish norm already after 8 weeks with no difference between groups. Event-free recovery was seen in 85% in the laparoscopic group and in 65% of the open cases (P < 0.010). Five recurrences occurred after laparoscopic surgery and 1 in the open group (P < 0.112). Overall, abdominal wall complaints decreased from 82% to 13% of the patients; and 92% were satisfied with the result after 1 year.In univariable logistic regression analyses laparoscopic surgery and male sex predicted an event-free recovery. Obesity (BMI > 30) predicted better outcome with regard to QoL. No predictors for recurrence or satisfaction were identified.

CONCLUSIONS: Patients with incisional hernia benefit substantially from surgery concerning QoL, independent of surgical technique. An event-free recovery occurred frequently after laparoscopic surgery. SF-36 seems well suited for assessing surgical outcome in patients after incisional hernia repair.

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