Prevention of common bile duct injury during laparoscopic cholecystectomy

Hepatobiliary Pancreat Dis Int. 2009 Aug;8(4):414-7.


Background: Since the widespread adoption of laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC) in the late 1980s, a rise in common bile duct (CBD) injury has been reported. We analyzed the factors contributing to a record of zero CBD injuries in 10 000 consecutive LCs.

Methods: The retrospective investigation included 10 000 patients who underwent LC from July 1992 to June 2007. LC was performed by 4 teams of surgeons. The chief main surgeon of each team has had over 10 years of experience in hepatobiliary surgery. Calot's triangle was carefully dissected, and the relationship of the cystic duct to the CBD and common hepatic duct was clearly identified. A clip was applied to the cystic duct at the neck of the gallbladder and the duct was incised with scissors proximal to the clip. The cystic artery was dissected by the same method. Then, the gallbladder was dissected from its liver bed. A drain was routinely left at the gallbladder bed for 1-2 days postoperatively.

Results: No CBD injuries occurred in 10 000 consecutive LCs, and there were 16 duct leaks (0.16%). Among these, there were 10 Luschka duct leaks (0.1%) and 6 cystic duct leaks (0.06%). Four hundred thirty cases were converted to open cholecystectomy (OC), giving a conversion rate of 4.3%. After a mean follow-up of 17.5 months (range 6-24 months), no postoperative death due to LC occurred, and good results were observed in 95% of the patients.

Conclusions: In our 10 000 LCs with zero CBD injuries, the techniques used and practices at our department have been successful. Surgeon's expertise in biliary surgery, preoperative imaging, precise operative procedures, and conversion from LC to OC when needed are important measures to prevent CBD injuries.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Child
  • Cholecystectomy, Laparoscopic / adverse effects*
  • Cholecystectomy, Laparoscopic / mortality
  • Clinical Competence
  • Common Bile Duct / injuries*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Iatrogenic Disease*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Reoperation
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Wounds and Injuries / etiology
  • Wounds and Injuries / mortality
  • Wounds and Injuries / prevention & control*
  • Young Adult