Emergency repair of complicated abdominal wall hernias: WSES guidelines

B. De Simone, A. Birindelli, L. Ansaloni, M. Sartelli, F. Coccolini, S. Di Saverio, V. Annessi, F. Amico, F. Catena

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: In July 2013, the World Society of Emergency Surgery (WSES) held the first Consensus Conference on emergency repair of abdominal wall hernias in adult patients with the intention of producing evidence-based guidelines to assist surgeons in the management of complicated abdominal wall hernias. Guidelines were updated in 2017 in keeping with varying clinical practice: benefits resulting from the increased use of biological prosthesis in the emergency setting were highlighted, as previously published in the World Journal of Emergency Surgery. This executive summary is intended to consolidate knowledge on the emergency management of complicated hernias by providing the broad readership with a practical and concise version of the original guidelines. Methods: This executive manuscript summarizes the WSES guidelines reporting on the emergency management of complicated abdominal wall hernias; statements are highlighted focusing the readers’ attention on the main concepts presented in the original guidelines. Conclusions: Emergency repair of complicated abdominal hernias remains one of the most common and challenging surgical emergencies worldwide. WSES aims to provide an essential version of the evidence-based guidelines focusing on the timing of intervention, laparoscopic approach, surgical repair following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) wound classification, antimicrobial prophylaxis and anesthesia in the emergency setting.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Abdominal hernia
  • Biological mesh
  • Emergency surgery
  • Hernia repair
  • Incarcerated hernia
  • Strangulated hernia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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