Most hernias in the United States today are repaired with mesh. There are many different types of hernia mesh available to surgeons. The most common material used to make a hernia mesh patch is polypropylene. It is safe, resistant to infection and has been used for more than 50 years.
Every several years, technology improves the material characteristics in order to provide stronger, lighter products that are better tolerated by patients. We use the Ventrio™ ST patch for most inguinal hernias and the Ventralex™ patch for umbilical hernias. These are made of polypropylene, and are safe and effective. We have been using this particular type of hernia mesh since 2004 and have had great success with both types.
Mesh in general, and hernia mesh in particular, has been the subject of lawsuits recently, which has caused some patients to be apprehensive about the idea of using surgical mesh. Mesh is very safe, and often the best option for many patients. There are some patients who would benefit from suture only repair of their hernia, but we recommend a mesh repair to the majority of patients we see.