Dr Johansson and colleagues designed a prospective trial in order to determine whether surgical approach (open versus laparoscopic) had an impact on morbidity and postoperative recovery after cholecystectomy for acute cholecystitis.
The research team randomly assigned the 70 patients who met the criteria for acute cholecystitis to receive open or laparoscopic cholecystectomy.
The type of operation was unknown to the patient and all hospital staff involved in the postoperative care.
The researchers ensured that the 2 groups were similar with respect to demographic and clinical characteristics.
There were no significant differences in rate of postoperative complications, pain score at discharge and sick leave.
|Median postoperative hospital stay was 2 days in each group, however, it was significantly shorter in the laparoscopic group|
|British Journal of Surgery|
In 8 patients a laparoscopic procedure was converted to open cholecystectomy.
The clinicians observed that the median operating time was 90 and 80 min in the laparoscopic and open groups respectively.
The researchers noted that the direct medical costs were equivalent in the 2 groups.
The research team found that, although median postoperative hospital stay was 2 days in each group, it was significantly shorter in the laparoscopic group.
Dr Johansson concluded, "Cholecystectomy for acute cholecystitis can be performed by either laparoscopic or open techniques without any major clinically relevant differences in postoperative outcome."
"Both techniques offer low morbidity and rapid postoperative recovery."