Cook Medical announced the positive results of Biodesign Hernia Graft at the Abdominal Wall Reconstruction Conference at the Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, D.C. The results were presented by Dr. N. Joseph Espat M.D., M.S., FACS professor of surgery at Boston University School of Medicine, and chief of surgical oncology and vice-chair of surgery at Roger Williams Medical Center. Biodesign is intended for the treatment of abdominal wall wounds. At the conference, Dr. Espat presented “Pilot assessment of the role of biomaterials as adjuvant to abdominal wall closure subsequent to hyperthermic chemotherapy” and “The role of biomaterials as adjuvant to abdominal wall closure in chemotherapy exposed patients.”

Dr. Espat’s research findings suggested that Cook Medical’s Biodesign Hernia Graft was safe and effective in treating chemotherapy patients suffering from hernias for which synthetic mesh is not a viable option. Biodesign was found to be particularly effective at treating high-risk patients with preoperative abdominal wall morbidity, gastrointestinal perforation and those patients receiving hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy or cytoreductive surgical procedures in Dr. Espat’s study. In Dr. Espat’s study the graft also proved to reduce postoperative adhesions, reduce the risk of surgical site infection and eliminate enterotomies of fragile bowel after chemotherapy during subsequent surgeries.

“Previous studies have shown that chemotherapy significantly impairs wound healing as a result of increased inflammation and weaker collagen at the wound site,” said Dr. Espat. “Multiple studies reported chemotherapy as a significant risk factor for surgical site infection and incisional hernia, a common occurrence following abdominal wall tumor removal. We are excited by these positive early results that demonstrate Biodesign’s ability to withstand aggressive chemotherapy treatments, and naturally reinforce weakened tissue at the wound site.”

The Biodesign Hernia Graft offers resistance to infection and completes remodeling. It reinforces the abdominal wall upon deployment and, over time, communicates with the patient’s body, signaling surrounding tissue to grow across the scaffold where the abdominal wall needs to be repaired.

The first annual Abdominal Wall Reconstruction (AWR) Conference featuring the research and best practices from America’s elite general, plastic, trauma and pediatric surgeons, wound care specialists and stoma nurses was held from June 25 -27, 2009. Agenda topics included AWR hernia repair, complex trauma and abdominal wounds, neonatal AWR defects, the economics of AWR, biologic and synthetic materials, and abdominal wall infections.