Mini-laparoscopic splenectomy

C. L. Backus, A. E. Park, B. D. Matthews, B. T. Heniford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Background and Purpose: Since the introduction of mini-laparoscopic instruments (2- to 3-mm diameter), their utility and safety have been questioned. Their application in cholecystectomy has recently been documented. This study determined the adequacy and safety of these minimally invasire instruments in laparoscopic splenectomy. Methods: Retrospective review of all 16 mini-laparoscopic splenectomies performed by the authors was carried out. Diagnoses included immune thrombocytopenia (5), spherocytosis (6), and β-thalassemia, sickle-cell disease, splenic mass, cyst, and splenomegaly in 1 case each. The average age of the patients was 20.1 years (range 4-70 years); seven patients were adults. Ten of the patients were female. The patients' body mass index ranged from 17 to 25 kg/m2. Splenomegaly (at least two times normal size: 100-200 g for children, 400-600 g for adults) was present in each case. A three-trocar technique was used in 15 patients, and a fourth trocar was required in only one case. Results: The average operative time and blood loss were 114 minutes (range 60-195 minutes) and 44 mL (range 10-150 mL), respectively. There were no intraoperative complications, and no patient required transfusion. Conversion to standard laparoscopy or laparotomy did not occur. The mean hospital stay was 1.4 days (range 1-2 days). With an average 20-month follow-up, no wound, septic, or other complications have been identified. All patients or their families (in the case of children) graded the cosmetic outcome as excellent. Conclusion: The use of mini-laparoscopic instruments for splenectomy is safe and effective in children and adults with a normal body mass index, even in the case of splenomegaly. Operative times are reasonable, and hospital stays are brief. The postoperative cosmetic appearance is excellent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)259-262
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Laparoendoscopic and Advanced Surgical Techniques - Part A
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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