Laparoscopic versus open liver resection for hepatocellular carcinoma: initial experience in Greece

Authors George C. Sotiropoulos, Nikolaos Machairas, Paraskevas Stamopoulos, Ioannis D. Kostakis, Dimitrios Dimitroulis, Dimitrios Mantas, Gregory Kouraklis.


Background Liver resection represents the treatment of choice for a small proportion of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), amenable to surgery. The remarkable evolution in surgical techniques during the last decades introduced laparoscopic hepatectomy in the operative management of HCC, even in the presence of liver cirrhosis. No comparative study on laparoscopic or open liver resection for HCC has been conducted in Greece yet.

Methods Patients undergoing liver resection for HCC by one senior hepatobiliary surgeon in our Institution during the period 11/2011-02/2016 were prospectively sampled and retrospectively analyzed for the purposes of this study. Statistical analysis encompassed Student's t-test, Fisher's exact test, the Kaplan-Meier method/log rank test and Cox proportional hazard regression analyses.

Results Eleven patients underwent laparoscopic and 21 open liver resection, respectively. Statistical differences between the 2 groups were observed for tumor size (P=0.04), major resections (P=0.01), Pringle maneuver (P=0.008), intraoperative blood transfusion (P=0.03), and duration of operation (P=0.004). Resection margins, and tumor recurrence showed no statistical differences. Three-year postoperative survival after laparoscopic and open hepatectomy was 100%, and 67%, respectively (P=0.06). Regression analysis for patient survival revealed prognostic value for BCLC staging, γ-glutamyl transferase levels, laparoscopic hepatectomy, UICC stage, Dindo-Clavien classification, and hospital stay. Laparoscopic hepatectomy remained as independent predictor of survival by multivariate analysis (P=0.0142).

Conclusion Laparoscopic hepatectomy for HCC in chronic liver disease represents a safe and innovative treatment tool in the management of these patients under the presupposition of careful patient selection.

Keywords Laparoscopic hepatectomy, liver resection, hepatocellular carcinoma, liver cirrhosis, hospital stay

Ann Gastroenterol 2016; 29 (4): 521-529

Original Articles