Laparoscopic ventral hernia repair during pregnancy
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Laparoscopic ventral hernia repair in comparison to open herniorrhaphy results in reduced length of stay, less post-operative pain, earlier return to work, and reduced complications for the repair of complex ventral hernias. The laparoscopic approach has been the standard of care for complex or large ventral hernias for non-pregnant patients over the past decade. Despite evidence that demonstrates that laparoscopy is safe during pregnancy, there is currently no consensus regarding the indications, contraindications, patient selection and post-operative care of pregnant patients evaluated for laparoscopic ventral herniorrhaphy.
The medical records of our pregnant patient who underwent laparoscopic ventral herniorrhaphy were reviewed for demographics, operative indications, surgical technique, perioperative complications, recurrence, and outcome of the pregnancy. A Medline search using the terms: laparoscopy, surgery, and pregnancy was performed to review the literature from 1997 to 2007.
This case report represents the first published description of a safe and successful laparoscopic approach to the repair of a complex ventral hernia in a woman at 21 weeks gestation. The discussion reviews the current literature regarding the safety of laparoscopy in pregnant women and highlights techniques to reduce perioperative morbidity and risk to the fetus.
Laparoscopic ventral hernia repair can be safe during pregnancy with appropriate fetal monitoring and consideration of physiologic changes that occur during parturition. Elective procedures should be delayed until after delivery and all semi-elective surgeries until organogenesis is completed during the second trimester.
KeywordsVentral Umbilical Hernia Laparoscopy Pregnancy
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