Laparoscopic splenectomy for hematological disorders. Our experience in adult and pediatric patients

Int Surg. 1998 Oct-Dec;83(4):303-7.


Laparoscopic splenectomy has gained increasing acceptance in the surgical management of a variety of splenic disorders, in particular hematological diseases. In this series, we report our experience with 20 patients (male:female ratio of 4:16 with median age of 16 years, range 5-49 years) who underwent this procedure because of ITP in 9 cases, spherocytosis in 7 and Cooley disease, sickle cell anemia, dyserythropoietic and hemolytic anemia in one case each. The patient was placed in a supine position using a fourtrocars technique. We did not perform pre-operative splenic artery embolization in any case. Spleen lower pole and its posterolateral attachments were dissected first, using electrocautery and endoclips. Vascular hilar isolation was achieved with an EndoGIA stapler and the spleen was removed by morcelation within a retrieval bag (16 cases) or via a 4-5 cm left subcostal incision (4 cases). One patient required conversion to open technique (conversion rate 5 %), because of uncontrolled bleeding from splenic hilum. Mean operative time was 165 min (range 100-240 min), mean splenic size was 13.5 cm (range 11-20 cm), with weight ranging between 140 and 1060 g and estimated blood loss was 151 ml (75-280 ml). No patient required a blood transfusion. Median postoperative hospital stay was 4 days (range 3-8 days). Postoperative complications occurred in 2 patients (10%), with no mortality rate in this series. Regarding the low complication rate and the advantages of a small abdominal trauma in the postoperative period, such as less postoperative pain, faster hospital discharge and better cosmetic results, the laparoscopic approach for elective splenectomy in hematological disorders has a substantial benefit for the patient.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Hematologic Diseases / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Laparoscopy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Purpura, Thrombocytopenic, Idiopathic / surgery
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Spherocytosis, Hereditary / surgery
  • Splenectomy / methods*