Laparoscopic colon resection: is it being utilized?

Department of Surgery, University of Nebraska Medical Center, 983280 Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE 68198-3280, USA.
Advances in Surgery 01/2013; 47:29-43. DOI: 10.1016/j.yasu.2013.02.003
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Since its inception, the use of laparoscopy for colon surgery has slowly increased, albeit at a slower rate than for cholecystectomy. Initial concerns about the safety and efficacy of laparoscopy have been addressed, and it is now known to have several potential short-term and long-term benefits for the patient. Early studies likely underestimated use of laparoscopy because of coding error. Currently, 40% to 50% of colectomies in the United States are performed laparoscopically, with a 10% to 20% rate of conversion to an open operation. The definitions oflaparoscopy and conversion to open remain at the discretion of the surgeons and their coders. Disparities still exist among use based on several patient, hospital, and surgeon factors. In the future, we will likely see a continuing increase in use as the new generation of surgeons enters practice, and there will be an increasing role for laparoscopy in rectal surgery. The benefit and extent of robotic surgery, natural orifice surgery, and single-incision surgery for minimally invasive colectomies are yet to be defined.

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    ABSTRACT: The authors described their experience with laparoscopic-assisted colorectal resection for colorectal carcinoma, both curative and palliative, with emphasis on patient selection. The techniques of the operations were described. Laparoscopic colorectal procedures for treatment of benign lesions have been shown to be less painful and to enhance early postoperative recovery. However, use of laparoscopic procedures for treatment of colorectal cancer are controversial. The authors have used laparoscopic techniques for curative and palliative resections of colorectal carcinoma with satisfactory early results. One hundred patients with colorectal carcinoma were selected over a 30-month period for laparoscopic-assisted colorectal resection. For 17 patients, laparoscopy revealed bulky tumor or locally advanced disease, and open surgery was performed. For 83 patients, laparoscopic-assisted colon and rectal resections were attempted. Procedural data and postoperative results were entered prospectively. The median follow-up period was 15.2 months (range, 2.5-32.7 months). Fourteen of 83 patients eventually required conversion to open surgery. The median operative time was 180 minutes. The patients could return to a normal diet in a median of 4 days. The median number of doses of analgesics required was two, and the median hospital stay was 6 days. The morbidity rate was 12%, and there was no deaths attributable to the procedure. There were four distant recurrences and one pelvic recurrence. Laparoscopic-assisted colorectal resection for selected patients is feasible, and early postoperative results are encouraging. This procedure does not appear to be associated with an excessive recurrence rate, and long-term follow-up is necessary for late survival figures.
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