Does immunosuppression increase perioperative wound morbidity in patients undergoing transversus abdominis release?

Bradley S. Kushner, Britta Han, Sara E. Holden, Arnab Majumder, Jeffrey A. Blatnik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Transversus abdominis release is an effective procedure for complex ventral hernias. As wound complications contribute to hernia recurrences, mitigating risk factors is vitally important for hernia surgeons. Although immunosuppression can impair wound healing, it has inconsistently predicted wound occurrences, and its effect on wound morbidity after a transversus abdominis release is unknown. Methods: Patients undergoing either an elective open or robotic bilateral transversus abdominis release with permanent synthetic mesh were retrospectively stratified by perioperative immunosuppression and secondarily by procedure type (open versus robotic) and immunosuppression. Results: A total of 321 patients were included for analysis. Overall, 63 (19.6%) patients were on chronic immunosuppression, with history of solid-organ transplant being the most common indication (43 patients). Patients stratified by perioperative immunosuppression were well-matched with similar defect size (P = .97), body mass index ≥30 (P = .32), diabetes (P = .09), history of surgical site infection (P = .53), surgical approach (P = .53), and tobacco use history (P = .33). No differences between cohorts were elicited for any wound event when stratified by immunosuppression use. Similarly, no differences were elicited when cohorts were further stratified also by procedure type. Conclusion: Chronic immunosuppression is often viewed as a notable risk factor for wound occurrences after surgery. However, our data suggest immunosuppression may not significantly increase the risk of perioperative wound morbidity follow transversus abdominis release as previously predicted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)811-817
Number of pages7
JournalSurgery (United States)
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2022


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