The role of laparoscopic ultrasound in the minimally invasive management of symptomatic hepatic cysts

P. Schachter, V. Sorin, Y. Avni, M. Shimonov, V. Friedman, A. Rosen, A. Czerniak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Now that the laparoscopic treatment of symptomatic liver cystic disease has proven feasible and safe, it is gaining wide acceptance. However, due to diagnostic pitfalls and a relatively high recurrence rate, further improvements and refinement of the procedure are still needed. We have evaluated the contribution of laparoscopic ultrasound in the diagnosis and management of patients with symptomatic liver cysts. Methods: Twelve patients with single or multiple cysts of the liver and two patients with polycystic liver disease were managed laparoscopically. Laparoscopic ultrasound served as an integral part of the procedure in all patients. Results: Patients underwent either complete cyst excision (two cases) or resection of the extrahepatic cystic component (eight cases). Additionally, in two patients, deep cysts not demonstrated by preoperative imaging studies were detected and treated with a combination of laparoscopy and laparoscopic ultrasound. In one patient with a cystobiliary fistula, conversion to an open cystjejunostomy was necessary. Patients with polycystic liver disease underwent a combination of excision and unroofing of both superficial and deeper cysts using laparoscopic contact ultrasound throughout the procedure. Laparoscopic ultrasonography was found to have a significant impact on the operative strategy in five patients (36%) with multiple cysts or polycystic disease. The postoperative course was uneventful in all cases. Thirteen patients remained asymptomatic throughout the follow-up period of 30 months; one patient with polycystic liver disease developed recurrent symptoms after 5 months and was treated with left hepatectomy. Conclusion: Additional use of laparoscopic ultrasound enables the detection, differentiation, and treatment of deep, nonvisualized cystic lesions (two patients, 16.6%) and validation of the adequacy of the laparoscopic procedure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)364-367
Number of pages4
JournalSurgical Endoscopy and Other Interventional Techniques
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2001


  • Hepatic cyst
  • Laparoscopic ultrasound
  • Liver
  • Unroofing


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