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May 1993

Routine Cholangiography Is Not Warranted During Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, Mass.

Arch Surg. 1993;128(5):551-555. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1993.01420170085012

• The role of intraoperative cholangiography during laparoscopic cholecystectomy was prospectively evaluated in 514 patients undergoing laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Before surgery, all patients were assigned to one of three groups depending on the likelihood of their having common bile duct stones. Stratification was based on objective historical, laboratory, or radiologic criteria. In 453 patients deemed unlikely to have stones, laparoscopic cholecystectomy was performed without cholangiography. Of these patients, four had retained stones (0.9%). In 25 patients likely to have stones, preoperative endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography identified stones in six patients (24%). In 36 patients whose likelihood of having stones was deemed indeterminate, intraoperative cholangiography was performed at laparoscopic cholecystectomy. A common bile duct stone was identified in one patient (2.8%). One common bile duct injury occurred in the group deemed unlikely to have stones, and this injury would not have been prevented by intraoperative cholangiography. We conclude that preoperative assessment will identify common bile duct stones and that routine cholangiography is not warranted. Meticulous dissection of the cystic duct at its origin at the infundibulum will prevent common bile duct injury.

(Arch Surg. 1993;128:551-555)

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