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Eur J Pain. 2008 Feb;12(2):214-25. Epub 2007 Jul 2.

Long-term pain after inguinal hernia repair in a population-based cohort; risk factors and interference with daily activities.

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Institute of Surgical Sciences, Uppsala University, Sweden.


In the Swedish Hernia Register 2834 inguinal hernia repairs in 2583 patients were registered in the county of Uppsala 1998-2004. In May 2005 the 2421 patients still alive were requested by mail to fill in a validated questionnaire concerning postherniorrhaphy pain. The final response rate became 72%. Altogether 519 patients (29%) stated that they had pain in the operated groin to some extent during past week. In 98 patients (6%) the pain interfered with daily activities. Factors associated with an increased risk of residual pain in a multivariate logistic regression analysis were age below median, operation for recurrence, open repair technique, history of preoperative pain, and less than three years from surgery. Factors not associated with occurrence of residual pain were gender, method of anaesthesia during surgery, hernia sac diameter, postoperative complications, hernia type, need for emergency operation, reducibility of the hernia sac and complete dissection of the hernia sac. Factors found to be associated with impairment of function due to pain in a multivariate logistic regression analysis were: age below median, female gender, medial hernia, open repair technique, postoperative complications, need for operation for recurrence, presence of preoperative pain and less than three years from surgery. The possibility of long-term pain as an outcome after hernia operations should be taken into consideration in the decision making prior to operation.

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