Ten-year experience with pediatric laparoscopic appendectomy—are we getting better?
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BACKGROUND/PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to compare our initial (1994-1997) and recent (2001-2003) experiences in laparoscopic appendectomy (LA). METHODS: A 2-year (2001-2003) retrospective chart review of cases of appendicitis was performed and compared with data obtained from 1994 to 1997 cases. Operating and anesthetic times as well as postoperative outcomes were analyzed. Cases of conversion to open appendectomy were included in the analysis. RESULTS: Two hundred and thirty-three LA cases from 2001 to 2003 were compared with 119 cases from 1994 to 1997. Operating time decreased significantly from 58 to 47 minutes in acute appendicitis (AA) and from 80 to 58 minutes in perforated appendicitis (PA). Anesthetic time decreased significantly in both AA (82 to 71 minutes) and PA (106 to 84 minutes). There were significant decreases in the conversion rate in PA (23.4% to 3.5%), although no change was seen in AA. In PA, the incidence of postoperative abscess decreased from 36.2% to 16.5%. There was no significant decrease in length of stay, amount of analgesia used, time to resume regular diet, or incidence of wound infections and bowel obstructions. CONCLUSIONS: Ten years of experience in LA has resulted in decreases in anesthetic and operating times for AA and PA as well as decreases in the incidence of abscesses and conversion rates.
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