Does antiplatelet therapy affect outcomes of patients receiving abdominal laparoscopic surgery? Lessons from more than 1,000 laparoscopic operations in a single tertiary referral hospital

J Am Coll Surg. 2013 Dec;217(6):1044-53. doi: 10.1016/j.jamcollsurg.2013.08.005. Epub 2013 Sep 17.


Background: The effect of antiplatelet therapy (APT) on surgical blood loss and perioperative complications in patients receiving abdominal laparoscopic surgery still remains unclear.

Study design: A total of 1,075 consecutive patients undergoing abdominal laparoscopic surgery between 2005 and 2011 were reviewed. Our perioperative management protocol consisted of interruption of APT 1 week before surgery and early postoperative reinstitution in low thromboembolic risk patients (n = 160, iAPT group). Preoperative APT was maintained in patients with high thromboembolic risk or emergent situation (n = 52, cAPT group). Perioperative and outcomes variables of cAPT and iAPT groups, including bleeding and thromboembolic complications, were compared with those of patients without APT (non-APT group, n = 863).

Results: In this cohort, 715 basic and 360 advanced laparoscopic operations were included. No patient suffering excessive intraoperative bleeding due to continuation of APT was observed. There were 10 postoperative bleeding complications (0.9%) and 3 thromboembolic events (0.3%), but the surgery was free of both complications in the cAPT group. No significant differences were found between the groups in operative blood loss, blood transfusion rate, and the occurrence of bleeding and thromboembolic complications. Multivariable analyses showed that multiple antiplatelet agents (p = 0.015) and intraoperative blood transfusion (p = 0.046) were significant prognostic factors for postoperative bleeding complications. Increased thromboembolic complications were independently associated with high New York Heart Association class (p = 0.019) and history of cerebral infarction (p = 0.048), but not associated with APT use.

Conclusions: Abdominal laparoscopic operations were successfully performed without any increase in severe complications in patients with APT compared with the non-APT group under our rigorous perioperative assessment and management. Maintenance of single APT should be considered in patients with high thromboembolic risk, even when an abdominal laparoscopic approach is considered.

Keywords: APT; CDC; Clavien-Dindo classification; DES; NYHA; New York Heart Association; OR; PCI; antiplatelet therapy; cAPT; drug-eluting stent; iAPT; interrupted antiplatelet therapy; noninterrupted antiplatelet therapy; odds ratio; percutaneous coronary intervention.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Abdomen / surgery
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Blood Loss, Surgical / prevention & control*
  • Blood Loss, Surgical / statistics & numerical data
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Laparoscopy*
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Perioperative Care / methods*
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors / administration & dosage*
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors / adverse effects
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology
  • Postoperative Complications / etiology
  • Postoperative Complications / prevention & control
  • Postoperative Hemorrhage / chemically induced
  • Postoperative Hemorrhage / epidemiology
  • Postoperative Hemorrhage / prevention & control*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Thromboembolism / epidemiology
  • Thromboembolism / etiology
  • Thromboembolism / prevention & control*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Withholding Treatment*
  • Young Adult


  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors