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Am J Surg. 1999 Jul;178(1):50-3; discussion 54.

A case-controlled study of laparoscopic compared with open lateral adrenalectomy.

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Department of Surgery II, Nagoya University School of Medicine, Japan.



Few studies have been done regarding laparoscopic transperitoneal lateral adrenalectomy compared with open transretroperitoneal lateral adrenalectomy in a case-controlled fashion.


A case-controlled study of 40 laparoscopic and 40 open adrenalectomies was done in patients who were matched for age, gender, endocrine disorder, side and size of tumor, and area of body surface. Follow-up was complete in 92.5% of the patients, with a mean follow-up period of 30 months.


Statistically significant differences (P <0.05) were present (laparoscopic versus open) when the following results were compared: estimated blood loss (40 g versus 172 g), operating time (147 versus 79 minutes), analgesic equivalents (2.9 versus 5.2 times), hospital stay (12 versus 18 days), and late morbidity (0% versus 47.5%). There were no statistically significant differences between the laparoscopic and open groups with regard to time to oral intake, time to walking, intraoperative and early complications, and total cost.


Laparoscopic adrenalectomy is a safe technique that results in greater patient comfort, decrease in estimated blood loss, and earlier discharge than open adrenalectomy, with no increase in cost. It should be adopted as the technique of choice for the removal of functioning adenomas and for adrenal masses less than 6 cm in diameter.

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