Postoperative abdominal wall defects with enterocutaneous fistulae

Gregory A. Dumanian*, Ramon Llull, Sai S. Ramasastry, Richard J. Greco, Michael T. Lotze, Howard Edington

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Abdominal wall dehiscence with an associated enterocutaneous fistula is a surgical complication with high morbidity and mortality. Management of the abdominal wall defect is complicated by the continued emergence of liquid bowel contents. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Large abdominal wall wounds of 10 patients with postoperative abdominal wall dehiscence and active enterocutaneous fistulae were managed with early skin grafting directly onto the granulated abdominal viscera. RESULTS: Skin graft take averaged 93 ± 12%, and there were no perioperative complications related to the skin grafting procedure. Overall mortality was 1 out of 10 patients. Enterocutaneous fistula output did not prove overly injurious to the skin grafts. Wound care was simplified in all but 1 patient with fitting of an ostomy appliance. CONCLUSION: Temporary abdominal wall wound closure with skin grafts improved patient comfort and simplified wound care in a staged reconstructive approach to this surgical complication.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)332-334
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican journal of surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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