INTRODUCTION: With approximately 1 million ventral and inguinal hernia repairs performed in the United States each year, even small rates of complications translate into large numbers of patients. Less invasive approaches that potentially lower morbidity deserve consideration, recognizing there are many technical considerations that currently limit their use. We describe a reproducible technique and lessons learned in our laboratory that answer some existing questions with regards to the use of NOTES for hernia repair. METHODS: A non-survival porcine model with general anesthesia was utilized in all cases. Each animal underwent transgastric peritoneal access with a percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) technique, and the gastrotomy was dilated with a wire-guided balloon dilatation catheter. An Esophageal Z-stent delivery device (Cook Medical, Winston-Salem, NC) was modified ex-vivo to allow us to introduce and protect a 10 x 15 cm lightweight polypropylene hernia prosthetic with pre-placed sutures. Once deployed, the sutures were pulled through the abdominal wall using a looped spinal needle technique in combination with the flexible endoscope. After the four anchoring sutures were tied, proprietary endoscopically placed tacks (Cook Medical) were placed at regular intervals between the sutures to secure the edges of the prosthetic. RESULTS: Hernia repairs were performed on five animals. In each case, we successfully completed prosthetic delivery and deployment into the peritoneal cavity, anchoring to the abdominal wall with full-thickness abdominal wall sutures, and endoscopically placed nitinol tacks. All prosthetics were deployed flat against the anterior abdominal wall. Operative times ranged from 65 to 120 min. CONCLUSION: Transgastric abdominal wall hernia repair is feasible, consistent, and reproducible. In particular, the delivery system can successfully deliver the prosthetic across the gastric wall via a transoral route. Survival animal experiments investigating outcomes related to quality of repair, microbiology, adhesions, and visceral closure need to be done. Human studies are not recommended until these issues are formally investigated.
NOTES transgastric abdominal wall hernia repair in a porcine modelAll Scholarly Works
Document TypeArticle, Peer-reviewed
Citation InformationEarle DB, Desilets DJ, Romanelli J. NOTES transgastric abdominal wall hernia repair in a porcine model Hernia 2010 Oct;14(5):517-22.