Ventral Hernia Repairs: Summary of Meta-Analyses

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I searched the Cochrane Database, EAST Practice Management Guidelines, and PubMed for systematic reviews and meta-analyses that discussed ventral and incisional hernia repairs.
I manually reviewed all titles to choose appropriate papers, then reviewed abstracts of chosen papers to select included references. Based on prior knowledge I added an additional meta-analysis which did not appear in the other searches. Based on the results given in the included references, I then coded individual comparison groups and outcomes as favoring the first or second cohort compared or as lacking statistical significance; where no pooled analysis was performed or data were abstracted from a single study, results were omitted. Additionally, one study was found in a later comment to contain an error, which was confirmed in a reply by the authors.

Please note that this is only a summary of available systematic reviews and meta-analyses, and a rather naive one at that. No additional meta-analysis was performed, papers reviewed by the individual references likely overlap, and some references are almost certainly more pertinent and powerful than others. Outcomes and comparisons that are similar between papers are likely heterogeneously defined.

In the Table, green cells describe findings showing benefit for the first intervention in a comparison (e.g., for “lap vs open” in most references, the “wound infection/complication” cell is green demonstrating the laparoscopic approach was found to have fewer wound complications). Red cells are the opposite, demonstrating a benefit to the second intervention. Please note that these may be different than some studies’ use of the term “favoring” one intervention over another which may cause confusion; the choice of first versus second intervention here is based on which is considered “better” rather than which has a higher number. Yellow cells found no statistically significant difference (NS) in the comparison, and cells are left blank if the comparison or outcome was not evaluated in the given reference or rely on a single study. For outcomes or comparisons evaluated in only one reference, no columns are included.

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