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Convalescence after laparoscopic inguinal hernia repair: a qualitative systematic review

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BACKGROUND: Duration of convalescence after inguinal hernia repair is of major socio-economic interest and an often reported outcome measure. The primary aim was to perform a critical analysis of duration of convalescence from work and activity and secondary to identify risk factors for unexpected prolonged convalescence after laparoscopic inguinal hernia repair.

METHODS: A qualitative systematic review was conducted. PubMed, Embase and the Cochrane database were searched for trials reporting convalescence after laparoscopic inguinal hernia repair in the period from January 1990 to January 2016. Furthermore, snowball search was performed in reference lists of identified articles. Randomized controlled trials and prospective comparative or non-comparative trials of high quality were included. Trials with ≥100 patients, >18 years of age and manuscripts in English were included. Scoring systems were used for assessment of quality.

RESULTS: The literature search identified 1039 papers. Thirty-four trials were included in the final review including 14,273 patients. There was overall a large variation in duration of convalescence. Trials using non-restrictive recommendations of 1-2 days or "as soon as possible to return to all activities" reported overall a shorter duration of convalescence compared with trials not using recommendations for convalescence. Strenuous physical activity at work, strenuous leisure activity and patients with expectations of a prolonged period of convalescence may be risk factors for prolonged convalescence extending more than a few days after laparoscopic inguinal hernia repair.

CONCLUSIONS: Patients should be recommended a duration of 1-2 days of convalescence after laparoscopic inguinal hernia repair. Short and non-restrictive recommendations may reduce duration of convalescence without increasing risk of pain, complications or recurrence rate.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSurgical Endoscopy
Volume30
Issue number12
Pages (from-to)5165-5172
ISSN0930-2794
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016

ID: 49149965