The 3rd Suvretta meeting in January 2003 was intended to give an overview of the of meshes in hernia operations. After the first meeting in 1995 on Ingui current use nal Hernia and the second on Incisional Hernia in 1998, the current congress was focused on the benefits and risks of hernia meshes, the reason being that meshes have more and more become the standard in open as well as in laparoscopic hernia operations. During the past 10 years new indications for the use of mesh as well as new types of mesh have been developed. Considerable experience with meshes has been published in the literature, including controlled trials of different results, dif ferent techniques, and last but not least, case reports of complications. We there fore felt it was timely and appropriate to hold a state-of-the-art meeting on meshes used in hernia curative procedures. During 3 intense working days which included presentations, demonstrations, and extensive discussions, the current role and the future potential development of artificial mesh implants were discussed by both traditional and laparoscopic sur geons. The most renowned hernia specialists of the world came together to discuss the use of meshes relating to construction, material, technique, experimental stu dies and clinical results. Each participant was invited to give a special talk on his favorite subject for discussion among the attending specialists.