Surgery under general anaesthesia in severe hidradenitis suppurativa: a study of 363 primary operations in 113 patients
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BACKGROUND: Treatment of hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) is a difficult undertaking, especially as there is no consensus on what surgical technique is preferred. At our centre severe HS (Hurley II/III) is operated under general anaesthesia, mostly with the STEEP procedure. OBJECTIVES: To investigate characteristics, surgical outcomes and patient satisfaction of HS patients who underwent deroofing or STEEP under general anaesthesia. METHODS: A clinical records-based retrospective analysis was conducted of all patients who had surgery under general anaesthesia between 1999 and 2013. Patient satisfaction was retrospectively investigated with questionnaires. RESULTS: A total of 482 operations (363 primary operations and 119 re-operations) were performed during the study period. The proportion of women in the included population was 68%. The median diagnostic delay (patient's and doctor's delay) was 6.5 years. Relapses occurred after 29.2% of primary operations. Women had higher relapse rates than men [odds ratio 2.85 (1.07;7.61)]. Hypergranulation of the wound was the most common complication and occurred in 7% of all operations. The median score patients attributed to the medical effect of surgery was eight of 10 (zero corresponding to very dissatisfied and 10 to very satisfied). CONCLUSION: The diagnostic delay in HS is long due to a lack of knowledge in both patients and health care professionals, indicating that there is a need for education. Deroofing and the STEEP are effective surgical procedures in severe cases of HS and lead to a relatively high patient satisfaction. The postoperative relapse risk is higher in women. Prospective studies are required for the development of clear guidelines on the appropriate choice of surgery.
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