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Ann Surg. 2016 May;263(5):862-6. doi: 10.1097/SLA.0000000000001579.

Long-term Results of a Randomized Double-blinded Prospective Trial of a Lightweight (Ultrapro) Versus a Heavyweight Mesh (Prolene) in Laparoscopic Total Extraperitoneal Inguinal Hernia Repair (TULP-trial).

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*Department of Surgery/Hernia Clinic, Diakonessenhuis Utrecht/Zeist, Utrecht, The Netherlands †Department of Surgery, UMCU Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands ‡Department of Surgery, Heerlen, The Netherlands §Department of Geriatric Medicine, Diakonessenhuis Utrecht/Zeist, Utrecht, The Netherlands ¶Department of Surgery, Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.



The aim of the randomized clinical trial was to compare the 2 years of clinical outcomes of a lightweight (Ultrapro) vs a heavyweight (Prolene) mesh for laparoscopic total extraperitoneal (TEP) inguinal hernia repair.


Lightweight meshes reduce postoperative pain and stiffness in open anterior inguinal hernia repair. The discussion about a similar benefit for laparoscopic repair is ongoing, but concerns exist about higher recurrence rates.


Between March 2010 and October 2012, male patients who presented with a primary, reducible unilateral inguinal hernia who underwent day-case TEP repair were eligible. Outcome parameters included chronic pain, recurrence, foreign body feeling, and quality of life scores.


During the study period, 950 patients were included. One year postoperatively the presence of relevant pain (Numeric Rating Score 4-10) was significantly higher in the lightweight mesh group (2.9%) compared with the heavyweight mesh group (0.7%) (P = 0.01), and after 2 years this difference remained significant (P = 0.03). There were 4 (0.8%) recurrent hernias in the heavyweight mesh group and 13 (2.7%) in the lightweight group (P = 0.03). No differences in foreign body feeling or quality of life scores were detected.


In TEP hernia surgery, there was no benefit of lightweight over heavyweight meshes observed 2 years postoperatively.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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