Infection and Recurrence Rates in Rural Inguinal Hernia Repair


  • Brooke Fowler, B.S. University of Kansas School of Medicine - Salina
  • Dorothy Hughes, Ph.D., MHSA Department of Population Health, University of Kansas School of Medicine-Salina, Salina, KS



inguinal hernia repair, general surgery, rural surgery, Kansas, community hospital, infection rates, recurrence rates


Introduction. Inguinal hernia repair (IHR) is a common procedure performed by general surgeons in rural community hospitals. Infection and recurrence rates for three types of IHR over two years at a rural Kansas hospital were analyzed. Previous research has shown outcomes regarding pain at six weeks were typically no different, and neither were long-term results, between open and laparoscopic techniques. However, there were fewer data showing the outcomes of these three hernia repair approaches in rural settings.

Methods. This was a retrospective, cross-sectional study using data collected from the electronic medical record (EMR) of a small hospital in central Kansas. Data from adult patients who had undergone IHRs over a two-year period (2018-2019) were deidentified and described using frequencies and percentages. This study used multi-variate logistic regression to examine the association of patient, surgeon, and surgical procedure characteristics on the occurrence of post-operative complications.

Results. Of the patients who received IHR, 46 were male and 5 were female. Mean age was 66 years, with a minimum of 34 and maximum ≥ 89 years. There were 14 total post-operative complications; two were superficial infections. There were no recurrences.

Conclusions. The sample size for each procedure type was too small to allow for statistical testing. However, the hospital had no recurrences. Future research should follow-up with this and other rural hospitals and perform a direct comparison of hernia surgery outcomes with those at a larger, more urban hospital, to understand potential differences by hospital size.


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Original Research

How to Cite

Fowler, B., & Hughes, D. (2023). Infection and Recurrence Rates in Rural Inguinal Hernia Repair. Kansas Journal of Medicine, 16(1), 65-68.