A review of a five (5) years experience (Sept. 2004-Aug. 2009) with hepatic resections at Gondar University Hospital (GUH)
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the fifth most common malignancy worldwide. Many patients with benign and malignant hepatobiliary disease have been referred to the surgical outpatient department (OPD) of GUH. Hepatic resection is appropriate treatment for a variety of benign or malignant primary or secondary liver tumors. However, hepatobiliary neoplasms present a surgical management challenge and experience in the effective surgical management of these conditions has been generally lacking in the country. Few patients have been offered resection for liver tumors at GUH. The resections reported here represent the first set of cases from GUH and probably from any other institution in Ethiopia. This review summarizes a five year experience in hepatic resection procedures at GUH. Patients' charts and operating room logbooks, as well as the follow up notes of the senior surgeons were reviewed. Nine tumor resections (major, minor and enucleations) were done. There were two deaths; one from sepsis and the other from an acute cardiopulmonary event. We believe that in carefully selected patients hepatic resection is possible in facilities such as GUH and generally offers the best opportunity for long-term palliation and survival. At laparotomy general abdominal examination is a crucial step and should be routinely undertaken prior to hepatic resection.