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Saudi J Gastroenterol. 2011 Jan-Feb;17(1):16-9. doi: 10.4103/1319-3767.74444.

Hand-assisted laparoscopic colorectal surgery: initial experience of a single surgeon.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, King Fahad Specialist Hospital, Dammam-31444, Eastern Province, Saudi Arabia. meshikhes@gmail.com



As totally laparoscopic colorectal surgery is considered challenging and technically demanding with a long steep learning curve, we adopted hand-assisted laparoscopic colorectal surgery as a bridge to totally laparoscopic assisted colorectal surgery. This prospective study aims to highlight the initial experience of a single surgeon with this technique.


A prospective analysis of the first 25 cases of hand-assisted laparoscopic colorectal resections which were performed by a single surgeon over a 15-month period. There were 15 males and 10 females with a mean age of 55.5 (range 20-82) years.


The indication in majority of cases was cancer (76%). The procedures consisted of 18 (72%) various colectomies and 7 (28%) anterior resections. The operative time ranged between 110-400 (mean 180) min. There was one conversion (4%) and the mean operative blood loss was 80 (range 60-165) ml. The number of lymph nodes retrieved in the cancer cases was 5-31 (mean 15) nodes. The mean length of hospital stay was five (range 3-10) days. The total number of short-term complications was six (24%) and there was one death due to anastomatic leak and multiorgan failure. Long-term complications after a maximum follow up of 30 months were two incisional hernias at the hand port site, but none of the patients developed adhesive small bowel obstruction or late anastomotic stricture. Currently all our colorectal procedures are conducted laparoscopically.


Hand-assisted laparoscopic colorectal procedures are easy to learn as a good bridge to master totally laparoscopic colorectal surgery.

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