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      Functional cine MRI of the abdomen for the assessment of implanted synthetic mesh in patients after incisional hernia repair: initial results.

      European Radiology

      Treatment Outcome, Adult, diagnosis, Tissue Adhesions, Surgical Mesh, Postoperative Complications, Polytetrafluoroethylene, Polypropylenes, Middle Aged, Male, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Cine, Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted, Humans, surgery, Hernia, Ventral, Female, Aged

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          The aim of our study was to develop a method that allows the visualisation and evaluation of implanted mesh in patients after incisional hernia repair with MRI. Furthermore, we assessed problems typically related with mesh implantation like adhesions and muscular atrophy. We enrolled 28 patients after incisional hernia repair. In 10 patients mesh implantation was done by laparoscopy (expanded polytetrafluoroethylene=ePTFE mesh) and in 18 by laparotomy (polypropylene mesh). Functional MRI was performed on a 1.5-T system in supine position. Sagittal and axial TrueFISP images of the entire abdomen were acquired with the patient repeatedly straining. Evaluation included: correct position and intact fixation of the mesh, furthermore visceral adhesions, recurrent hernia and atrophy of the rectus muscle. The ePTFE mesh was visible in all cases; the polypropylene mesh was not detectable. In seven of the ten ePTFE meshes the fixation was not intact; two recurrent hernias were detected. Twenty of 28 patients had intraabdominal adhesions. In 5 cases mobility of the abdominal wall was reduced, and 16 patients showed an atropy of the rectus muscle. Functional cine MRI is a suitable method for follow-up studies in patients after hernia repair. ePTFE meshes can be visualized directly, and typical complications like intestinal adhesions and abdominal wall dysmotility can be assessed reliably.

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