Date: 16 Mar 2006

Laparoscopic hepatic resection

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Although laparoscopy in general surgery is increasingly being performed, only recently has liver surgery been performed with laparoscopy. We critically review our experience with laparoscopic liver resections.


From January 2000 to April 2004, we performed laparoscopic hepatic resection in 16 patients with 18 hepatic lesions. Nine lesions were benign in seven patients (five hydatid cysts, three hemangiomas, and one simple cyst), five were malignant in five patients (five hepatocarcinoma), and four patients had an uncertain preoperative diagnosis (one suspected hemangioma and three suspected adenomas). The mean lesion size was 5.2 cm (range, 1–12). Twelve lesions were located in the left lobe, three were in segment VI, one was in segment V, one was in segment IV, and one was in the subcapsular part of segment VIII.


The conversion rate was 6.2%; intraoperative bleeding requiring blood transfusions occurred in two patients. Mean operative time was 120 min. Mean hospital stay was 4 days (range, 2–7). There were no major postoperative complications and no mortality.


Hepatic resection with laparoscopy is feasible in malignant and benign hepatic lesions located in the left lobe and anterior inferior right lobe segments (IV, V, and VI). Results are similar to those of the open surgical technique in carefully selected cases, although studies with large numbers of patients are necessary to drawn definite conclusions.