An ventral hernia or incisional hernia is the result of poor healing of an incision (cut) made in the abdominal wall during surgery. The result is a defect (hole) in it, where abdominal contents (intestinal handles) can come out causing obstructions, pain and, in the most severe cases, intestinal necrosis.
Causes of ventral hernia
There are several causes of ventral hernia and may depend on the patient, the surgery itself, or the surgeon.
Causes related to the patient:
With respect to the patient, there are circumstances that may hinder the correct healing of the surgical wound: obesity, poor nutrition, deficits of some vitamin, collagen diseases (protein responsible for “manufacturing” the scar), corticosteroid and immunosuppressive treatments.
Causes related to surgery:
With respect to the surgery itself, complications can occur that affect the adequate closure and subsequent wound healing: infection of the wound due to contaminated surgeries, wall defect and a closure with excessive tension on the edges.
Causes related to the surgeon:
The most important factor related to good healing of a surgical wound is the proper closure of that incision by the surgeon. What is called a GOOD TECHNICAL closure of the abdominal wall. There is a scientific medical consensus on how this ideal closure technique should be carried out to minimize the subsequent development of an ventral hernia.
The ventral hernia, a serious and common problem The ventral hernia is a very serious problem. In several published articles it is estimated that up to one third of the surgical interventions in which an incision is made in the abdominal wall present later events.
Even laparoscopic surgery does not get rid of this problem since, although much smaller incisions are made, the frequency of ventral hernia is around 15%.
Ventral Hernia treatment
The ventral hernia treatment is surgical. We know that the more surgeries performed, the worse the results. Hence the importance of performing adequate and lasting surgery, performed by an expert surgeon and in a referral center.
The popularization of the use of surgical meshes (prostheses) to treat this problem in a more lasting or permanent way has meant a very important advance. The majority of the scientific community considers its use necessary because its advantages (much better results) far outweigh its disadvantages (discomfort from a foreign body, infection).
The other very important factor that has improved the results has been the dedication of a group of surgeons to develop new, varied, and better surgical techniques in the treatment of ventral hernia in the abdominal wall, especially in the last 15-20 years. To this, laparoscopic surgery has been added as another very useful technique in certain groups of patients.
The importance of a good surgeon to treat ventral hernia For these reasons; its high incidence, its technical difficulty, and the need for an accurate and updated knowledge of anatomy and new surgical techniques, it is fundamental to choose a surgical dedicated to the abdominal wall for the treatment of primary ventral hernia or that has been operated on several occasions ( relapsed). It is crucial to get the best results.