This review compares the most popular techniques in managing the wounds after excisional haemorrhoidectomy, which are either to lay the wounds open or to close them.
Randomized controlled trials were identified from the major electronic databases using the search terms "hemorrhoid*" and "haemorrhoid*." Duration of operation, pain, length of hospital stay, time off work, time for wound healing, patient satisfaction, continence, manometry findings and complications were assessed. Quantitative meta-analysis was performed as appropriate or possible.
Six trials including 686 patients met the inclusion criteria. The median follow-up time ranged from 1.5 to 19.5 months. Quantitative meta-analysis showed that there was no significant difference in cure rates between the two techniques (relative risk, 1.4; 95% CI, 0.86 to 2.2; p=0.191). Open haemor-rhoidectomy was more quickly performed (weighted mean difference, 1.03 min; 95% CI, 0.51 to 1.54; p<0.001). Closed haemorrhoidectomy wounds showed faster healing (weighted mean difference, 1.2 weeks; 95% CI, 0.88 to 1.55; p<0.001). Hospital stay, maximum pain score, total and individual complication rates were not significantly different.
Apart from faster wound healing after closed haemorrhoidectomy, open and closed techniques appeared equally effective and safe. However, there were only a few studies which presented information in different ways, and statistical heterogeneity was high.