Mesh versus suture repair of umbilical hernia in adults

Mesh versus suture repair of umbilical hernia in adults: a randomised, double-blind, controlled, multicentre trial Kaufmann R et al.


Between June 21, 2006, and April 16, 2014, we randomly assigned 300 patients, 150 to mesh repair and 150 to suture repair. The median follow-up was 25·1 months (IQR 15·5–33·4). After a maximum follow-up of 30 months, there were fewer recurrences in the mesh group than in the suture group (six [4%] in 146 patients vs 17 [12%] in 138 patients; 2-year actuarial estimates of recurrence 3·6% [95% CI 1·4–9·4] vs 11·4% (6·8–18·9); p=0·01, hazard ratio 0·31, 95% CI 0·12–0·80, corresponding to a number needed to treat of 12·8). The most common postoperative complications were seroma (one [<1%] in the suture group vs five [3%] in the mesh group), haematoma (two [1%] vs three [2%]), and wound infection (one [<1%] vs three [2%]). There were no anaesthetic complications or postoperative deaths.


This is the first study showing high level evidence for mesh repair in patients with small hernias of diameter 1–4 cm. Hence we suggest mesh repair should be used for operations on all patients with an umbilical hernia of this size.

The Lancet