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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2000 September;55(9):577-80


language: Italian

Laparoscopic appendectomy. A retrospective analysis of our experience compared to the literature

Panzera F., Ghisio S., Grosso A., Vigezzi P., Vitale M., Cariaggi R. M., Mistrangelo M.


Background. The benefits of laparoscopic appendectomy (LA) remain controversial. This study reports a critical examination of our experience in a peripheral hospital.
Methods. A total of 128 appendectomies have been performed since January 1996, of which 63 (49%) were laparoscopic. The patients included 52 (82.5%) females and 11 (17.5%) males with a mean age of 20.8 years (range 11-46). Emergency surgery was required in 6 cases (9.5%) and was elective in 57 (90.5%). Appendectomy was performed during another operation in 3 cases (laparoscopic cholecystectomy).
Results. Mortality was nil. Morbidity was 1.7% (1 case). The index of conversion was 0%. Only one major complication occured. This took the form of perforation of an ileal loop following accidental lesion during adhesiolysis. The intraoperative diagnosis was not confirmed in 12 (19%) cases: 9 ovarian cysts, 1 terminal ilieitis and 2 cases of acute salpingitis. In 10 cases (15%) surgery was associated with adhesiolysis, and in 6 cases (9.3%) the appendix was retrocecal. Mean operating time was 42 min (range 18 - 105 min). The mean hospitalisation was 3.3 days.
Conclusions. The authors emphasise the numerous advantages of laparoscopic techniques in their experience, including excellent cosmetic results, reduced PO pain, rapid functional recovery, lower incidence of adhesion, wound infection and laparocele, and more cost-effective when mechanical staplers are not used. Owing to the ability to explore the entire abdominal cavity, the main advantage of this technique consisted in a correct differential diagnostic balance, especially in young women of child-bearing age, between appendectomy and pathologies of the uterus and adnexa.

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