Background: We present our experience with laparoscopic cholecystectomy in pregnant patients, with consideration of the physiological changes of pregnancy affecting anesthetic and surgical management.
Methods: We reviewed the medical records of all pregnant patients undergoing laparoscopic surgery at Brigham and Women's Hospital between January 1, 1991 and April 30, 1995.
Results: Laparoscopic cholecystectomy was performed without complication in ten patients (gestational age 9-30 weeks). Details of anesthetic and surgical management are described. The anesthetic and surgical implications of pregnancy-associated physiological changes in the gastrointestinal, respiratory, cardiovascular, and central nervous system are reviewed.
Conclusions: With appropriate attention to the altered physiology of pregnancy, laparoscopic cholecystectomy can be performed safely and effectively during pregnancy.