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Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy in Cirrhotic Patients

Tuech, Jean-Jacques MD; Pessaux, Patrick MD; Regenet, Nicolas MD; Rouge, Clotilde MD; Bergamaschi, Roberto MD; Arnaud, Jean-Pierre MD

Surgical Laparoscopy, Endoscopy & Percutaneous Techniques: August 2002 - Volume 12 - Issue 4 - p 227-231
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Since 1992, laparoscopic cholecystectomy has been the treatment of choice for symptomatic gallstones. The advantages of laparoscopic cholecystectomy for most patients have been extensively published. However, its benefits and successful use in patients with cirrhosis are less well documented. The aim of this study was to determine the efficacy and safety of laparoscopic cholecystectomy in cirrhotic patients. We did a retrospective review of the records of 26 consecutive laparoscopic cholecystectomy procedures performed on cirrhotic patients between January 1992 and September 2000. Twenty-two patients were classified as having Child's class A cirrhosis, and 4 patients were classified as having Child's class B. No patients were classified as having Child's class C cirrhosis. There were 20 men and 6 women, with a mean age of 57 years (range, 37–76). All procedures were completed laparoscopically. There was histologic confirmation of cirrhosis in all patients. The mean operative time was 126 minutes (range, 60–184). The mean estimated blood loss was 110 mL (range, 40–380). Complications occurred in 7 patients (27%). No operative mortality occurred in this study. The mean length of hospital stay was 5 days (range, 3–14). Our results and the results of others show that laparoscopic cholecystectomy in cirrhotic patients seems to be safe in selected Child–Pugh class A and B patients with compensated cirrhosis. Cholecystectomy remains a high-risk procedure in cirrhotic patients, and indications for cholecystectomy should be evaluated carefully. Controlled trials are required to confirm the safety of this procedure, and further studies are also required to evaluate the management of gallbladder disease in patients with Child–Pugh class C cirrhosis.

From the Department of Digestive Surgery, Angers University Hospital, Angers, France

Received October 1, 2001;

revision received March 26, 2002; accepted April 9, 2002.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Jean-Pierre Arnaud, Department of Digestive Surgery, 4 rue Larrey, CHU, 49000 Angers, France.

© 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.