Conversion during laparoscopic aortobifemoral bypass: a failure?

I Fourneau, I Mariën, Ph Remy, C D'hont, T Sabbe, K Daenens, S Houthoofd, A Nevelsteen
European Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery 2010, 39 (2): 239-45

OBJECTIVES: To study the impact of conversion on postoperative recovery, morbidity and mortality in laparoscopic aortobifemoral bypass surgery for aorto-iliac occlusive disease (AIOD).

DESIGN: Retrospective analysis of a prospectively maintained database.

METHODS: Between November 2002 and December 2006, 139 patients were treated for severe AIOD with a laparoscopic aortobifemoral bypass at one community and one university hospital. Demographic data, operative data, postoperative recovery data, morbidity and mortality were recorded and analysed according to a conversion and a non-conversion group.

RESULTS: Conversion was needed in 13.7% of the patients. Morbidity was 16.5%-14.2% in the non-conversion group and 31.8% in the conversion group. Systemic morbidity was significantly higher in the conversion group (31.6% vs.10%; p=0.002), but only one patient had incomplete recovery; local morbidity was comparable in both groups (10.5% vs. 5.8%; p=0.337). Mortality rate was 2.2%.

CONCLUSION: Laparoscopic aortobifemoral bypass surgery is a safe procedure for the treatment of AIOD. The outcome of patients after conversion is not affected in the way that it could be an impediment to start a laparoscopic procedure. Conversion in time is a safe way to overcome the learning curve.

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