The role of diagnostic laparoscopy for chronic abdominal conditions: an evidence-based review

Surg Endosc. 2009 Sep;23(9):2073-7. doi: 10.1007/s00464-009-0467-6. Epub 2009 Apr 9.


Background: Diagnostic laparoscopy is minimally invasive surgery for the diagnosis of intraabdominal diseases. The aim of this review is a critical examination of the available literature on the role of laparoscopy for chronic intraabdominal conditions.

Methods: A systematic literature search of English-language articles on MEDLINE, the Cochrane database of evidence-based reviews, and the Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects was performed for the period 1995-2006. The level of evidence in the identified articles was graded. The search identified and reviewed six main categories that have received attention in the literature: pelvic pain and endometriosis, primary and secondary infertility, nonpalpable testis, and liver disease.

Results: The indications, contraindications, risks, benefits, diagnostic accuracy of the procedure, and its associated morbidity are discussed.

Conclusions: The limitations of the available literature are highlighted, and evidence-based recommendations for the use of laparoscopy to stage intraabdominal cancers are provided.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cryptorchidism / diagnosis
  • Cryptorchidism / surgery
  • Endometriosis / complications
  • Endometriosis / diagnosis
  • Endometriosis / surgery
  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infertility, Female / diagnosis
  • Infertility, Female / surgery
  • Laparoscopy* / methods
  • Liver Diseases / diagnosis
  • Liver Diseases / surgery
  • Male
  • Pelvic Pain / diagnosis
  • Pelvic Pain / etiology
  • Pelvic Pain / surgery
  • Tissue Adhesions / complications
  • Tissue Adhesions / diagnosis
  • Tissue Adhesions / surgery