There are a number of different methods that surgeons use to reduce the incidence of adhesions. The most effective way is to perform laparoscopic procedures whenever possible, as they carry a much lower risk of symptomatic adhesion formation. In addition, surgeons attempt to minimize tissue necrosis, providing meticulous hemostasis, liberally irrigating the abdominal cavity and using non-reactive suture materials. In some situations, drugs that inhibit the inflammatory response, such as corticosteroids, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory, pentoxifylline and calcium channel blockers have been used. However, the most effective method of reducing adhesions has been determined to be the use of adhesion barriers.
The first currently used product entered the market in 1989 and was made out of oxidized regenerated cellulose (ORC). It is absorbed within four weeks of application. Seprafilm® by Genzyme consists of sodium hyaluronate and carboxymethylcellulose, forming a film that becomes a hydrated gel 24 to 48 hours after placement.