Laparoscopic Colon Resections: A Five-Year Retrospective Review

Gibson, M.; Byrd, C.; Pierce, C.; Wright, F.; Norwood, W.; Gibson, T.; Zibari, G.B.
March 2000
American Surgeon;Mar2000, Vol. 66 Issue 3, p245
Academic Journal
In recent years, laparoscopic surgery has become a matter of growing interest. It has been shown that laparoscopic colectomy is well tolerated and safe for benign disease. However, there is some uncertainty about using this method for malignant disease when curative resection is the aim. These uncertainties mainly consist of spread of cancer to port site, long-term survival, and adequacy of resection. The majority of laparoscopic colectomies are technically assisted procedures in which anastomosis is performed outside the abdomen. However, some surgeons are now performing this surgery totally laparoscopically with the anastomosis performed inside the abdomen. Laparoscopic colectomy is currently practiced with great frequency by general surgeons. Its performance requires a steep learning curve and a large number of cases to obtain proficiency. The indications for laparoscopic colectomy are different from one institution to another. In some institutions all patients with colorectal disease are candidates for laparoscopic colectomy and in others it may be limited to benign disease only. The purpose of this review is to analyze all laparoscopic colectomies performed at our medical center since 1992. We conducted a retrospective chart review of both hospital and clinic charts of patients who underwent colectomies at our hospital. A total of 338 patient charts were reviewed. In a comparison of both laparoscopic (n = 285) and converted (n = 53) methods, the age and operative time were about the same. Age average and operating room time average were similar for both groups. With laparoscopy, there was a 3-day drop in length of hospital stay as well as a 1-day-earlier regaining of bowel function. Hospital cost dropped $5000 average for the laparoscopic colectomy. The conversion rate at our center was 15 per cent. Complication rates were lower in the laparoscopic group. Recurrence of cancer at the port site (0.7%) was no higher than in the converted group (incisional recu...


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