Diagnostic Laparoscopy: A 5‐Year Experience in a Hepatology Training Program

Carlos Vargas, Lennox J. Jeffers, David Bernstein, K. Rajender Reddy, Sivakumar Munnangi, Simon Behar, Curtis Scott, Talley Parker, Eugene R. Schiff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Diagnostic laparoscopy continues to have a role in the evaluation and diagnosis of acute and chronic liver diseases, primary and metastatic liver tumors, and peritoneal diseases. We retrospectively reviewed the records of 1794 diagnostic laparoscopies performed at our institution from 1987 to 1992 to identify the indications, results, and safety of this procedure in our training program. A definitive diagnosis was made in 91% of eases with biopsy performed in 93%. Chronic liver disease was evaluated in 890 patients, and a diagnosis was made in 98%. Four hundred thirty-seven patients were evaluated for suspected primary or metastatic carcinoma, and a diagnosis was made in 85%. Ascites was evaluated in 73 patients, and a diagnosis was made in 82%. One-hundred sixty-four patients were evaluated for abnormal liver function tests, and a diagnosis was made in 91%. HIV-related liver function test abnormalities were evaluated in 67 patients, and a diagnosis was made in 81%. One hundred sixty-three patients underwent diagnostic laparoscopy fur the evaluation of hepatomegaly, splenomegaly, unexplained portal hypertension, fever of unknown origin, and cholestasis, and a diagnosis was made in 74% of cases. Eight major complications (including abdominal viscus perforation, hemobilia, splenic laceration, bleeding) and thirty-one minor complications were seen. Our findings confirm that diagnostic laparoscopy is a safe and valuable procedure in the evaluation of chronic liver disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1258-1262
Number of pages5
JournalThe American journal of gastroenterology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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