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  • 5673
  • 2016-09-05

Laparoscopic subtotal cholecystectomy

Epublication WebSurg.com, Sep 2016;16(09). URL:
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Laparoscopic cholecystectomy is a hazardous operation when the anatomy of Calot’s triangle is distorted by acute inflammation or any other factor (in our case, adhesions due to the recent surgery, and especially due to radiotherapy). In these difficult situations, the intraoperative decision to use a protective surgical technique as subtotal cholecystectomy is made with the purpose to prevent any injury to the biliary tree. This video demonstrates the case of a 69-year-old woman with morbid obesity (BMI of 55) and diagnosed with acute cholecystitis. Her past medical history is relevant for right nephrectomy for renal carcinoma using a right subcostal laparotomy followed by radiochemotherapy completed 3 months earlier. Subtotal cholecystectomy is a procedure which aims to remove portions of the gallbladder when structures of Calot’s triangle cannot be safely identified in "difficult gallbladders". The conversion rate to open surgery was higher among this category of patients. We describe our experience with a technical change, namely, a tactical laparoscopic subtotal cholecystectomy which almost always prevents conversion at the end of the procedures, and prevents both the risk of injury to the common bile duct and the risk of hemorrhage. In such cases, there is a need for rigor and prudence in order to return to the traditional technique in real time, if necessary. Laparoscopic subtotal cholecystectomy can be considered a safe and feasible alternative to conversion to open surgery. Subtotal cholecystectomy is an essential technique to be used in difficult gallbladders. It achieves morbidity rates comparable to those reported for total cholecystectomy in simple cases.