Evaluation of absorbable polyglycolic acid mesh as a wound support

Louis M. Marmon, Charles D. Vinocur, Steven B. Standiford, Charles W. Wagner, Jeffery M. Dunn, William H. Weintraub

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The ideal wound-support material would reinforce a wound early in the healing process when intrinsic wound strength is the weakest, yet disappear over time, preventing many of the untoward late effects seen with currently utilized nonabsorbable materials. This study was designed to evaluate the effectiveness of a newly designed absorbable material, polyglycolic acid mesh (Dexon), as a buttress for abdominal wound closed under moderate tension. Young male rats (n=211) were divided into three experimental groups. Animals in groups 1 (n=96) and 2 (n=95) had a 1.2 cm2 midline abdominal wall defect created and closely primarily. Animals in group 2 had a 2×5 cm piece of polyglycolic acid mesh sutured to the anterior abdominal wall overlying the closed abdominal defect. Animals in group 3 (n=20) were unoperated controls. The animals in groups 1 and 2 were killed 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 weeks after surgery. The entire anterior abdominal wall was removed and placed upon a bursting strength testing device. Bursting strength determinations of the supported and unsupported abdominal closures revealed that the strength of the wounds reinforced with polyglycolic acid mesh was significantly greater than unsupported wounds at 1, 2, and 2 weeks after surgery. Wounds supported with mesh had bursting strengths similar to unoperated abdomens by the first postoperative week. This study demonstrates that abdominal wall defects in rats closed primarily develop increased would strength when the closure is supported by absorbable polyglycolic acid mesh. The use of an absorbable material may alleviate potential late complications associated with implantation of nonabsorbable materials. The clinical application of such a material remains to be determined.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)737-742
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of pediatric surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1985

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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