Laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy

A. Lebedyev, O. Zmora, J. Kuriansky, D. Rosin, M. Khaikin, M. Shabtai, A. Ayalon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Background: Advanced laparoscopic techniques have been adapted to various surgical pathologies, including pancreatic tumors, with the potential benefits of attenuated surgical trauma, faster recovery, and improved cosmesis. Laparoscopic pancreatic surgery is technically demanding, and thus has not yet gained widespread acceptance. The aim of this study was to review our preliminary experience with laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy for benign and malignant pancreatic pathologies. Methods: A retrospective chart review of consecutive patients with benign and malignant pancreatic tumors who underwent laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy in a university-affiliated department of surgery between 1997 and 2003 was performed. Data relative to demographic and clinical characteristics, indications for surgery, surgical procedure, and postoperative course were recorded. Results: Laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy was attempted for 12 patients with benign (n = 8) and malignant (n = 4) pancreatic tumors and successfully completed laparoscopically in 75%, of these cases. Six early postoperative complications (two abscesses, two instances of diabetes mellitus, two pancreatic leaks) developed in three patients. The spleen was successfully, preserved in 58% of the cases. Conclusions: This preliminary experience suggests that laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy is a feasible and safe procedure with a morbidity rate comparable with that for the conventional open, procedure. However, laparoscopic surgery for malignant pancreatic tumors remains controversial. Larger series with longer follow-up periods are necessary to determine the role-of laparoscopic surgery in the treatment of pancreatic pathologies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1427-1430
Number of pages4
JournalSurgical Endoscopy and Other Interventional Techniques
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2004


  • Cancer/pancreas
  • Cystadenoma
  • Insulinoma
  • Laparoscopic surgery
  • Pancreatectomy/distal


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