A comparison of short-term outcomes between laparoscopic and open emergent repair of perforated peptic ulcers

  • Daniel L. Davenport
  • Walker R. Ueland
  • Shyanie Kumar
  • Margaret Plymale
  • Andrew C. Bernard
  • J. Scott Roth



We compared 30-day outcomes in patients undergoing emergent open and laparoscopic repair of perforated peptic ulcers in a large multicenter cohort.


Prospectively obtained data in the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program public use files from 2010 to 2016 were reviewed. Perioperative risks and outcomes were compared in unmatched and propensity-matched groups using parametric/non-parametric statistical tests as appropriate.


A total of 4210 procedures were identified 345 (8.2%) laparoscopic and 3865 (91.8%) open. Laparoscopic repairs increased from 4.5% of 2010 cases to 11.4% of 2016 cases (p < .001). Open repair patients had more acute presentation including higher rates of ASA class, hypoalbuminemia, preoperative septic shock, dyspnea, and mechanical ventilation (all p < .01). Laparoscopic operations were longer than open procedures (p < .001). Mortality (8.5 vs. 3.5%), median length of stay (7 vs. 5 days), transfusion rates (13.7 vs. 7.0%), renal failure (3.7 vs. 1.2%), and respiratory failure (15.5 vs. 5.2%) were all worse in the unmatched open group (all p < .01). Propensity matching resulted in 342 laparoscopic and 626 open cases of similar ulcer type, demographics, ASA class, preoperative SIRS/sepsis, hypoalbuminemia, and wound class. Mortality was similar between matched groups (5.0 vs. 3.5%, p = .331). Median length of stay was longer in the open group (6 vs. 5 days, p < .001), which also had higher rates of prolonged ventilation/reintubation (9.6 vs. 5.3%, p = .019) and abdominal wall wound occurrences (6.2 vs. 2.3%, p = .042). Return to the operating room and 30-day readmissions did not differ between the matched groups.


Emergent laparoscopic repair of perforated peptic ulcer is increasingly being performed, is safe relative to open repair (in patients without preoperative septic shock), and confers a modest benefit in terms of length of stay, respiratory, and abdominal wall wound complications.


Perforated peptic ulcer Outcomes Laparoscopic repair Open repair 


Compliance with ethical standards


Dr. Bernard has a consulting relationship with Atos Bio for clinical trial data adjudication and does expert witness case review and provides testimony in medical malpractice cases. Dr. Bernard is the President of the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma and receives free travel for association-related meetings and events. Dr. Roth has a consulting relationship with Bard, Allergan, and Miromatrix. He is a participant on a speaking bureau for Bard and Miromatrix. He has some stock ownership in Miromatrix. He receives research funding from Bard. Drs. Plymale, Davenport and Kumar and Mr. Ueland have no conflicts of interest or financial interests to disclose.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel L. Davenport
    • 1
  • Walker R. Ueland
    • 2
  • Shyanie Kumar
    • 3
  • Margaret Plymale
    • 1
    • 4
  • Andrew C. Bernard
    • 1
    • 4
  • J. Scott Roth
    • 1
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of SurgeryUniversity of KentuckyLexingtonUSA
  2. 2.College of MedicineUniversity of KentuckyLexingtonUSA
  3. 3.General Surgery Residency ProgramUniversity of KentuckyLexingtonUSA
  4. 4.Division of General SurgeryUniversity of KentuckyLexingtonUSA

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