Background: Minimally invasive surgery is increasingly being used in trauma surgery as both a diagnostic and a therapeutic tool. However, significant debate regarding the accuracy, safety, and indications for minimally invasive surgery in trauma continues to impede widespread acceptance of these techniques among trauma surgeons. Method: Herein, we report a contemporary review of the current role of both laparoscopy and thoracoscopy in modern trauma surgery. Literature search was performed using PubMed database and the following keywords: "Trauma," "Minimally Invasive Surgery," "Laparoscopy," and "Thoracoscopy." Results: Current recommendations advocate for the use of laparoscopy as a diagnostic tool in penetrating trauma for the diagnosis of diaphragm injuries and peritoneal violation. A significant body of research demonstrates that laparoscopy in select hemodynamically normal patients can significantly decrease nontherapeutic laparotomy rates and hospital costs and is highly sensitive and specific with very low missed injury rates, including small bowel injuries. Laparoscopic repairs to a wide breadth of abdominal and thoracic injuries have been reported with impressive results. Adherence to a standardized laparoscopic examination system and routine use of laparoscopy in elective or acute care practice strongly influence positive results with minimally invasive surgery in trauma. Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery is most commonly used for evaluation of diaphragm, evacuation of retained hemothorax, and management of ongoing bleeding post-trauma. Conclusion: Minimally invasive surgery does offer several advantages compared to traditional open surgery and should be considered as an additional tool in the trauma surgeon's armamentarium in the care of select injured patients.
- Minimally invasive surgery
- Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery
ASJC Scopus subject areas