A prospective study of bile leaks after laparoscopic cholecystectomy for acute cholecystitis

Dominguez, Edward P.; Giammar, Dave; Baumert, John; Ruiz, Oscar
March 2006
American Surgeon;Mar2006, Vol. 72 Issue 3, p265
Academic Journal
journal article
Surgeons are increasingly performing laparoscopic cholecystectomy in the setting of acute cholecystitis. The acutely inflamed gallbladder poses a more technically demanding dissection with potential for an increase in bile leak rates. Clinical and subclinical bile leak rates after laparoscopic and open cholecystectomy in the elective setting are known. This study prospectively evaluates the rate of clinical and subclinical bile leaks after laparoscopic cholecystectomy in the setting of acute cholecystitis. One hundred patients underwent laparoscopic cholecystectomy for acute cholecystitis, as determined intraoperatively and by history, ultrasound, fever, or leukocytosis. On postoperative Day 1, the patients underwent cholescintigraphy (PIPIDA scan) analyzed by a board-certified radiologist for evidence of bile leaks. Postoperative cholescintigraphy revealed eight scans positive for bile leaks. Regardless of scan result, no patient experienced a clinically symptomatic bile leak. Laparoscopic cholecystectomy is a safe and effective treatment for acute cholecystitis with acceptable clinical and subclinical bile leak rates.


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