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Vaginal extraction of pelvic masses following operative laparoscopy

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Objective: To investigate the clinical outcome of patients undergoing operative laparoscopy for a benign pelvic mass followed by vaginal extraction of the surgical specimen. Methods: Patients presenting with a suspected benign mass greater than 5 cm or an extrauterine pregnancy undergoing operative laparoscopy were considered eligible. Patients with endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease, and previous hysterectomy were excluded. In all cases the surgical specimen was removed through a colpotomy performed in laparoscopy at the level of the posterior vaginal fornix. Additionally, a review of the literature has been conducted to specifically address the incidence of colpotomy-related complications. Results: Sixty-three patients were included in the study. The median (range) time required to extract the freed mass to the complete suture of the colpotomy was 15 min (5–31). This time was significantly longer in patients with myomas than for others [median 21 min (range: 10–31) vs median 10 min (5–13), p<0.05]. No intra- and postoperative colpotomy related complications occurred. No patients complained dyspareunia at follow-up visits. A total of 23 studies were reviewed for a total of 501 patients and only one (0.2%) complication (severe vaginal bleeding) was directly attributable to the colpotomy. Conclusion: Removal of a pelvic mass through a laparoscopic colpotomy is feasible, safe, and offers better cosmetic results than transabdominal extraction of the surgical specimen.

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Ghezzi, F., Raio, L., Mueller, M. et al. Vaginal extraction of pelvic masses following operative laparoscopy . Surg Endosc 16, 1691–1696 (2002).

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