Laparoscopic cholecystectomy in situs inversus totalis: Feasibility and review of literature

Int J Surg Case Rep. 2013;4(8):711-5. doi: 10.1016/j.ijscr.2013.02.030. Epub 2013 May 6.


Introduction: Situs inversus totalis is a rare anomaly characterized by transposition of organs to the opposite site of the body. Laparoscopic cholecystectomy in those patients is technically more demanding and needs reorientation of visual-motor skills to left upper quadrant.

Presentation of case: Herein, we report a 10 year old boy presented with left hypochondrium and epigastric pain 2 months duration. The patient had not been diagnosed as situs inversus totalis before. The patient exhibit a left sided "Murphy's sign". Diagnosis of situs inversus totalis was confirmed with ultrasound, computerized tomography (CT) and magnetic resonant image (MRI) with presence of multiple gall bladder stones with no intra or extrabiliary duct dilatation. The patient underwent laparoscopic cholecystectomy for cholelithiasis.

Discussion: Feasibility and technical difficulty in diagnosis and treatment of such case pose challenge problem due to the contra lateral disposition of the viscera. Difficulty is encountered in skelatonizing the structures in Calot's triangle, which consume extra time than normally located gall bladder. A summary of additional 50 similar cases reported up to date in the medical literature is also presented.

Conclusion: Laparoscopic cholecystectomy is feasible and should be done in situs inversus totalis by experienced laparoscopic surgeon, as changes in anatomical disposition of organ not only influence the localization of symptoms and signs arising from a diseased organ but also imposes special demands on the diagnosis and surgical skills of the surgeon.

Keywords: Laparoscopic cholecystectomy; Situs inversus totalis-cholelithiasis.