, Volume 26, Issue 5, pp 1205-1213
Date: 16 Dec 2011

Single-incision laparoscopic surgery (SILS) vs. conventional multiport cholecystectomy: systematic review and meta-analysis

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Single-incision laparoscopic surgery (SILS) has gained increasing attention due to the potential to maximize the benefits of laparoscopic surgery. The aim of this systematic review and pooled analysis was to compare clinical outcome following SILS and standard multiport laparoscopic cholecystectomy for the treatment of gallstone-related disease.


An electronic search of Embase and Medline databases for articles from 1966 to 2011 was performed. Publications were included if they were randomised controlled studies in which patients underwent either single-incision or multiport cholecystectomy. The primary outcome measures for the meta-analysis were postoperative complications and postoperative pain score [visual analogue scale (VAS) on the day of surgery]. Secondary outcome measures were operating time and length of hospital stay. Weighted mean difference was calculated for the effect size of SILS on continuous variables, and pooled odds ratios were calculated for discrete variables.


In total, 375 cholecystectomy operations from 7 randomised controlled trials were included, 195 by single-incision (SILS) and 180 by conventional multiport. Operating time was significantly longer in the SILS group compared to the standard multiport laparoscopic cholecystectomy group (weighted mean difference = 2.13; P = 0.0001). There was no significant difference in the incidence of postoperative complications, postoperative pain score (VAS), or the length of hospital stay between the two groups.


The results of this meta-analysis demonstrate that single-incision laparoscopic cholecystectomy is a safe procedure for the treatment of uncomplicated gallstone disease, with postoperative outcome similar to that of standard multiport laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Future high-powered randomized studies should be focused on elucidating subtle differences in postoperative complications, reported postoperative pain, and cosmesis following SILS cholecystectomy in more severe biliary disease.