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J Pediatr Surg. 2005 Aug;40(8):1279-83.

Comparison of surgical stress between laparoscopic and open appendectomy in children.

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Department of Pediatric Surgery, the Second Hospital of Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xi'an 710004, China.



The present study aimed to evaluate laparoscopic appendectomy (LA) in comparison with conventional open appendectomy (OA) in children, with special emphasis on the extent of surgical trauma after LA and OA, and to assess whether LA had any clear advantages compared with conventional OA.


A total of 160 patients with a median age of 7.9 years (range 3-15 years) were studied. Sixty-nine of them underwent LA, and the remaining 91 underwent OA. Serum interleukin (IL) 6 and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels which are thought to play a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of surgical trauma and can also be used to monitor the magnitude of surgical trauma were measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay before surgery and 12 hours after surgery. In addition, we compared operating time, hospital stay, incidence of wound infection, and incidence of intra-abdominal infection.


The operative time of normal and suppurative appendix in the laparoscopic group was significantly shorter than that in the open group, respectively, but the operative time of gangrenous appendix was not different between the laparoscopic group and open group. The hospital stay in the laparoscopic group was also significantly shorter than that in the open group. Postoperatively, 1 patient had port-site infection in the laparoscopic group, whereas 10 had wound infection in the open group; this difference was highly significant (chi2 = 4.19, P < .05). Three patients in the open group and 2 patients in the laparoscopic group had intra-abdominal infection, and the difference had no statistically significant difference (chi2 = 0.10, P < .05). Preoperative IL-6 levels were not different between the 2 groups, but the rise (preoperative vs postoperative) of IL-6 in the laparoscopic group was remarkably less than that in the open group. Similar results were obtained for CRP; serum CRP levels in the basal state were not different between the 2 groups, but the rise (preoperative vs postoperative) of CRP in the laparoscopic group was also substantially less compared with that in the open group.


LA for children was as safe and effective as the open procedure and had significant advantages over OA because of less operating time, less postoperative complications, less surgical trauma, and more rapid postoperative recovery.

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