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Abstract

Following abdominal wall surgery, incisions are commonly sutured, stapled or glued together by primary intention. Developments within the field of tissue engineering have led to the use of prosthetic meshes with over 20 million meshes implanted each year worldwide. The function of the mesh is to hold together abdominal wall incisions and repair abdominal hernias. This has been demonstrated to be highly effective in some individuals however some experience postoperative complications including; dehiscence with further abdominal herniation (viscera protruding through the abdominal wall). Little is currently known about why these complications occur in a subset of patients and there are currently no existing reviews for the use of prosthetic mesh implants in abdominal wall repairs. Therefore, this literature review examined existing studies on six electronic databases. A total of 463 studies were identified, of which 20 were included in this review. The purpose of this literature review was to evaluate the success rate outcomes of abdominal hernia repairs with prosthetic mesh implantation versus non-prosthetic mesh to determine the success rate of repair, long-term use and potential reason of mesh rejections. The results identified that prosthetic mesh is highly successful in a large proportion of patients however the prosthetic mesh has long-term complications with rejection being observed in a subset of patients. The reason as to why the prosthetic is being rejected is still largely unknown, therefore further investigation needs to be done into this aspect