ABSTRACT: Biliary atresia (BA) is the progressive inflammatory obstruction and fibro-obliteration of all or part of the extrahepatic biliary tree and the intrahepatic bile ducts and has its onset exclusively within the first several months of life. This study was undertaken to present the value of diagnostic laparoscopy in infants with prolonged jaundice and technique for laparoscopic cholangiography.
A 5-mm umbilical trocar was introduced to create a port for a 30-degree laparoscope. If the gallbladder was of good size, the fundus was exteriorized through the right subcostal trocar site and a catheter was inserted into the gallbladder for cholangiography, following partial dissection from the liver bed, if required. If the gallbladder was atretic, the fundus was not exteriorized and a laparotomy was performed and cholangiography was abandoned, because the lumen of an atretic gallbladder was usually not fully patent.
At laparoscopy, 12 patients had good-sized gallbladders and minimal-to-mild liver fibrosis. They underwent cholangiography via the exteriorized fundus, and infantile hepatitis syndrome (HIS) or cholestatic syndrome (CS) in 8 cases, BA in 2 cases, and biliary hypoplasia (CBDH) in 2 cases were identified. Five patients' gallbladders dissected from the liver bed underwent cholangiography, and BA in 3 cases and CBDH in 2 cases were identified. The remaining 21 had atretic gallbladders and varying degrees of liver fibrosis, so cholangiography via the exteriorized fundus was abandoned and converted to open Kasai portoenterostomy.
Laparoscopy-assisted cholangiography is a simple, accurate, and safe method in the diagnosis of prolonged jaundice in infants and allows the anatomic structure of the biliary tree to be obtained accurately with minimal surgical intervention.
Journal of Laparoendoscopic & Advanced Surgical Techniques 12/2009; 19(6):827-30. · 1.40 Impact Factor