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Surg Endosc. 2006 Jul;20(7):1036-44. Epub 2006 May 17.

Comparison of laparoscopic and open ileocecal resection for Crohn's disease: a metaanalysis.

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  • 1Department of Surgical Oncology and Technology, Imperial College London, St. Mary's Hospital, 10th Floor QEQM Building, Praed Street, London, W2 1NY, UK.



The role of laparoscopic surgery for patients with ileocecal Crohn's disease is a contentious issue. This metaanalysis aimed to compare open resection with laparoscopically assisted resection for ileocecal Crohn's disease.


A literature search of the Medline, Ovid, Embase, and Cochrane databases was performed to identify comparative studies reporting outcomes for both laparoscopic and open ileocecal resection. Metaanalytical techniques were applied to identify differences in outcomes between the two groups. Sensitivity analysis was undertaken to evaluate the heterogeneity of the study.


Of 20 studies identified by literature review, 15 satisfied the criteria for inclusion in the study. These included outcomes for 783 patients, 338 (43.2%) of whom had undergone laparoscopic resection, with an overall conversion rate to open surgery of 6.8%. The operative time was significantly longer in the laparoscopic group, by 29.6 min (p = 0.002), although the blood loss and complications in the two groups were similar. In terms of postoperative recovery, the laparoscopic patients had a significantly shorter time for recovery of their enteric function and a shorter hospital stay, by 2.7 days (p < 0.001).


For selected patients with noncomplicated ileocecal Crohn's disease, laparoscopic resection offered substantial advantages in terms of more rapid resolution of postoperative ileus and shortened hospital stay. There was no increase in complications, as compared with open surgery. The contraindications to laparoscopic approaches for Crohn's disease remain undefined.

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