open to eligible people ages 18–70
Incisional hernias occur in nearly 20% of all laparotomy incisions accounting for almost 400,000 ventral hernia repairs annually in the United States. There is an even higher incidence of incisional hernia recurrence after prior repair if the patient is obese. Each subsequent hernia repair leads to increased morbidity and durability. It is not infrequent that many surgeons will advise overweight or obese patients to lose substantial weight prior to complex incisional hernia repair. However, it is quite difficult for any individual to lose more than 8 pounds a month in a safe, rapid, and sustainable fashion. This is based on losing 2 lbs. per week utilizing diet and exercise alone. Many patients with incisional hernia are physically debilitated that they cannot engage in any substantial physical activity to lose weight. Traditional laparoscopic bariatric surgery (i.e. Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) and SG), while feasible, is a technically challenging endeavor since prior abdominal surgeries increase the amount of intra-abdominal adhesions. Furthermore, there is still a subset of patients who are not candidates for laparoscopic weight loss surgery because of inability to tolerate pneumoperitoneum due to underlying physiologic dysfunction. - Novel minimally invasive endoscopic technique may help obese patients with an incisional hernia lose weight in a safe and rapid fashion. Early case reports and small case series on gastric bypass revision utilizing such endoscopic technique have shown promise in efficacious weight loss. There have been reports of achieving nearly 20-25% excess weight loss. Abu Dayyeh and colleagues have also demonstrated that endoscopic gastric plication as a primary weight loss procedure is feasible, but their reported follow-up was only 3 months.8 Brethauer, et al. from Cleveland Clinic performed transoral gastric volume reduction for weight management in 18 patients (TRIM TRIAL). They utilized the Restore Suturing System (Restore device) and reported a mean decrease in BMI of -4.0 ± 3.5 kg/m2. Mean excess weight loss was 27.7% ± 21.9% with no reports of adverse events.9 There have also been reports of not only weight loss but improved insulin sensitivity and secretion.10 Laparoscopic gastric greater curvature plication afforded a mean 50.7% excess weight loss at 12 months.11 The intent of this study is not to demonstrate endoscopic suturing to be a primary option for weight-loss surgery. Preliminary reports have shown such procedure is technically feasible but not durable and the effects of the procedure varied widely among the study participants.12 The investigators view this technology as a bridge for morbidly obese patients, who will need subsequent surgery for another surgical disease, to improve their body habitus and decrease their postoperative morbidity and mortality. The aims of the investigators study are: - Feasibility of endoscopic gastric sleeve plication - Define the technical aspects of endoscopic suturing for sleeve plication - Provide long-term follow-up for both weight loss and resolution of their co-morbidities - Time from the endoscopic procedure to their incisional hernia repair - Photographic evidence of the stomach after endoscopic plication during the incisional hernia repair There are several advantages for the proposed study. First it avoids entering the intra-abdominal cavity. Second, the procedure is performed solely with sutures obviating the need for stapling which may increase the risk of gastric leak from the staple line.13 Lastly, it avoids placing endoscopic intra-luminal devices such as intragastric balloons or duodenal-jejunal sleeves. Limiting factor of such devices is a high rate of premature device withdrawal due to intolerance. Furthermore, their effects are short-lived as most devices will need to be removed by 12 weeks and they only offer a mean 23.6% excess weight loss.13, 14 The implications of this study can be far-reaching. Once efficacy is demonstrated where enough weight loss is achieved that patients can safely and quickly undergo their incisional hernia surgery, the investigators can then conduct a retrospective case-control cross-matched study to further delineate its true benefit. If there is a true benefit, then a randomized control study can be employed in the future.
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