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Comparative study of diathermy versus scalpel incision in inguinal hernia repair

Mubbashir Quazi, Suresh Rangnathrao Harbade, Sarojini Pramod Jadhav, Ajay Dnyanoba Subhedar.


Introduction: In the present study we hypothesized that the use of electrocautery for making skin incisions is safe and beneficial than the use of scalpel in patients undergoing inguinal hernia repair on the basis of less blood loss, minimal complications and repaired with primary healing.
Material and Methods: A prospective comparative clinical study design was used. Randomly selected patients above the age of 12 years with already diagnosed hernia coming to the tertiary care centre. A total of 200 patients with already diagnosed hernias attended the OPD of the multidisciplinary tertiary care centre. All cases of elective uncomplicated inguinal hernia repair. We assessed the pain of study sub0jects with the help of VAS (Visual Analogue Scale). For the evaluation of blood loss, we used the weight of gauze pieces that were used to soak the blood during surgery.
Results: The mean incisional blood loss by scalpel was 4.5 ± 1.05 ml while by electrocautery it was 1.99 ± 0.86 ml showing a highly significant association as the p-value was 0.0001. On the day of surgery mean postoperative pain score was 2.97 ± 0.17 by scalpel and 2.51 ± 0.65 by electrocautery with a highly significant p-value i.e. 0.0001.
Conclusion: Electrocautery for making skin incisions is safe and more beneficial than the use of a scalpel.

Key words: Diathermy, scalpel incisions, Inguinal hernia

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