Laparoscopic cholecystectomy in cirrhosis: contraindication or privileged indication?

M Morino, G Cavuoti, C Miglietta, G Giraudo, P Simone
Surgical Laparoscopy, Endoscopy & Percutaneous Techniques 2000, 10 (6): 360-3
Until recently, cirrhosis has been considered to be an absolute or relative contraindication of laparoscopic cholecystectomy. An evaluation of benefits and risks of laparoscopic cholecystectomy in the treatment of gall bladder lithiasis in cirrhotic patients is presented. Thirty-three consecutive laparoscopic cholecystectomies in patients with cirrhosis were performed between March 1990 and March 1997. During the same period, no open cholecystectomy was performed in patients with cirrhosis. There was no morbidity or mortality; the conversion rate was 6% (2/33). No patient received blood transfusion, and the mean hospital stay was 2.8 days. These results favorably compare with the results of open cholecystectomy. Specific advantages of laparoscopic cholecystectomy in patients with cirrhosis include the absence of wound infection and a lower rate of postoperative hepatic failure. Finally, laparoscopic surgery reduces the risk of viral contamination (the hepatitis B virus, the hepatitis C virus, or the human immunodeficiency virus) of the surgical staff.

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