Parker S, Wood C, Sanders D, Windsor A
Abdominal wall reconstruction is a rapidly evolving area of surgical interest. Due to the increase in prevalence and size of ventral hernias and the high recurrence rates, the academic community has become motivated to find the best reconstruction techniques. Whilst interrogating the abdominal wall reconstruction literature, we discovered an inconsistency in hernia nomenclature that must be addressed. The terms used to describe the anatomical planes of mesh implantation 'inlay', 'sublay' and 'underlay' are misinterpreted throughout. We describe the misinterpretation of these terms and give evidence of where it exists in the literature. We give three critical arguments of why these misinterpretations hinder advances in abdominal wall reconstruction research. The correct definitions of the anatomical planes, and their respective terms, are described and illustrated. Clearly defined nomenclature is required as academic surgeons strive to improve abdominal wall reconstruction outcomes and lower complication rate.