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Background: Abdominal lipectomy is becoming an increasingly common surgical procedure in patients with esthetic deformities resulting from massive weight loss induced by bariatric surgery. Sometimes a midline incisional hernia coexists with the pendulus abdomen. Herein presented is a technique to perform a retromuscular mesh repair of the incisional hernia while sparing the umbilicus.

Methods: The abdominal lipectomy with concomitant retro-muscular mesh repair of a midline incisional hernia is done sparing the vascular supply of the umbilicus on one side only.

Results: 5 consecutive women with pendulus abdomen resulting from bariatric surgery-induced massive weight loss and concomitant midline incisional hernia underwent abdominal lipectomy and incisional hernia mesh repair. Mean BMI was 28.6 kg/m2 (range 26-35), one patient was a smoker, and another had type 2 diabetes requiring oral hypoglycemic agents. Two patients had had a previous incisional hernia repair with intraperitoneal mesh. One patient had partial necrosis of the umbilicus and another experienced necrosis of only the epidermis that recovered fully.

Conclusions: The umbilicus can be safely spared during abdominal lipectomy with concomitant midline incisional hernia mesh repair. Recurrent incisional hernia and common risk factors for wound healing such as diabetes and obesity increase the risk of umbilical necrosis.

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