Conference Coverage

Monofilament suture works best for cesarean closure


– A monofilament suture led to substantially fewer wound complications than a braided suture for closing nonemergency cesarean incisions in a head-to-head trial with 520 evaluable women.

Cesarean incision closure with a braided, polyglactin 910 suture (Vicryl) led to 65% more wound complications than the monofilament poliglecaprone 25 suture (Monocryl), Arin M. Buresch, MD, said at the annual Pregnancy Meeting sponsored by the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine.

Dr. Arin M. Buresch

Dr. Arin M. Buresch

The monofilament suture costs about 60% more than the braided suture, she noted, but “given that we found a significant difference in wound complications, I would be willing to pay extra” to reduce patients’ complication risk, said Dr. Buresch, a perinatologist with Kaiser Permanente in San Diego.

This is the first randomized, controlled trial to compare these two suture types, according to Dr. Buresch, and she highlighted the need for caution about changing practice based on results from a single study. But based in large part on these results, which were gathered at Montefiore Medical Center in New York, the obstetrical staff at Montefiore is now primarily using the monofilament, poliglecaprone 25 suture, she said.

The study enrolled 550 pregnant women at 37 weeks’ gestation or greater during May 2015 to July 2016. Participants were either scheduled for an elective cesarean delivery or underwent a nonemergency, indicated cesarean after labor began but without significant maternal or fetal distress. The study excluded emergency cesareans as well as women with a recent urogenital infection, chronic or injected steroid use, or a vertical skin incision. The enrolled women averaged 31 years old, and their average body mass index was 34 kg/m2. The demographic and clinical profile of the two randomized groups closely matched.

The study’s primary endpoint was the incidence of a wound complication during 30 days following delivery. A complication could be a surgical site infection, hematoma, seroma, or wound separation. Of the 550 women randomized, 520 were available for complete 30-day follow-up.

The results showed that wound complications occurred in 9% of the 263 women treated with the poliglecaprone 25 monofilament suture and in 14% of the 257 treated with the polyglactin 910 braided suture, a statistically significant difference, Dr. Buresch reported. The relative risk for a complication increased by 65% with the braided suture, compared with patients treated with monofilament sutures. Treating 18 patients with the monofilament suture prevented one wound complication, on average.

A subgroup analysis showed that the poliglecaprone 25 suture was effective at reducing wound complications in women who underwent elective cesarean deliveries, but among the 17% of participants who had begun labor at the time of their cesarean delivery the monofilament suture conferred no significant advantage, compared with the braided suture. Benefit from the poliglecaprone 25 monofilament occurred about equally across the entire range of body mass index among the women in the study, Dr. Buresch said.

Dr. Buresch had no disclosures.

On Twitter @mitchelzoler

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