World Journal of Surgery

, Volume 30, Issue 3, pp 419–430 | Cite as

Stapler Hepatectomy is a Safe Dissection Technique: Analysis of 300 Patients

  • Peter Schemmer
  • Helmut Friess
  • Ulf Hinz
  • Arianeb Mehrabi
  • Thomas W. Kraus
  • Kaspar Z’graggen
  • Jan Schmidt
  • Waldemar Uhl
  • Markus W. Büchler



In many surgical procedures, stapling devices have been introduced for safety and to reduce the overall operative time. Their use for transection of hepatic parenchyma is not well established. Thus, the feasibility of stapler hepatectomy and a risk analysis of surgical morbidity based on intraoperative data have been prospectively assessed on a routine clinical basis.

Materials and Methods

From October 1, 2001, to January 31, 2005, a total of 416 patients underwent liver resection in our department. During this period endo GIA vascular staplers were used for parenchymal transection in 300 cases of primary (22%) and metastatic (57%) liver cancer, benign diseases (adenoma, focal nodular hyperplasia [FNH], cysts) (14%), gallbladder carcinoma (2%), and other tumors (5%). There were 193 (64%) major resections (i.e., removal of three segments or more) and 107 minor hepatic resections. Additional extrahepatic resections were performed in 44 (15%) patients.


Median values for operative time and intraoperative hemorrhage were 210 minutes and 700 ml, respectively. Further, transfusion of RBC and FFP was needed in 17% and 11% of patients, respectively. A postoperative ICU stay for >2 days was required in 18% of patients. The median postoperative hospital stay was 10 days (IQR 8–14 days). The most frequent surgical complications were bile leak (8%), wound infection (3%), and pneumothorax (2%). In 7% of cases after stapler hepatectomy a relaparotomy was necessary. Treated medical complications were pleural effusion (7%), renal insufficiency (5%), and cardiac insufficiency (3%). Risk assessment revealed that both operative time and indication for resection had significant impact on surgical morbidity. Mortality (4%) and morbidity (33%) were comparable to other high-volume centers performing conventional liver resection techniques.


In conclusion, stapler hepatectomy can be used in a routine clinical setting with a low incidence of surgical complications.


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Copyright information

© Société Internationale de Chirurgie 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter Schemmer
    • 1
  • Helmut Friess
    • 1
  • Ulf Hinz
    • 2
  • Arianeb Mehrabi
    • 1
  • Thomas W. Kraus
    • 1
  • Kaspar Z’graggen
    • 1
  • Jan Schmidt
    • 1
  • Waldemar Uhl
    • 1
  • Markus W. Büchler
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of General SurgeryRuprecht-Karls-UniversityGermany
  2. 2.Unit for Documentation and Statistics of the Department of General SurgeryRuprecht-Karls-UniversityGermany

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