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Hematology. 2007 Dec;12(6):561-70.

Alterations of hemostasis after laparoscopic and open surgery.

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  • 11st Department of Surgery, Athens Medical School, Laiko University Hospital, Athens, Greece.



After tissue injury caused by trauma or surgery, alterations of hemostasis are observed and there is a risk for postoperative thromboembolic complications. Laparoscopic surgery, by causing limited tissue injury, appears to be associated with a lower risk for thromboembolism than open surgery. We conducted a prospective randomized study in order to detect potentially existing differences in activation of coagulation and fibrinolytic pathways between open and laparoscopic surgery.


Forty patients suffering from chronic cholelithiasis were randomly assigned to undergo open (group A n = 20) or laparoscopic cholecystectomy (group B n = 20) by the same surgical and anesthesiology team. Demographic data were comparable. Blood samples were taken (a) preoperatively, (b) at the end of the procedure, (c) 24 h postoperatively and (d) 72 h postoperatively. The following parameters were measured and compared within each group and between groups: platelets (PLT), soluble fibrin monomer complexes (SFMC), fibrin degradation products (FDP), D-dimers (D-D), fibrinogen (FIB), activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT), prothrombin time (PT). Thrombin-antithrombin III complexes (TAT) were measured at 24 and 72 h postoperatively. Prothrombin fragment 1 + 2 (F1 + 2) was measured at 24 and 72 h postoperatively in 11 patients of group A and 13 patients of group B, respectively.


Demographics were comparable between groups. Immediately postoperatively, TAT and F1 + 2 were significantly higher in group A as compared to group B (p < 0.05). They also increased significantly postoperatively as compared to preoperative levels within each group (p < 0.05). D-dimers were significantly higher in group A as compared to group B (p < 0.01) immediately postoperatively. D-dimers also increased significantly postoperatively in group B as compared to preoperative levels (p < 0.001). FIB decreased slightly in both groups at 24 h postoperatively but there was a significant increase in group A as compared to group B (p < 0.01). SFMC were detected twice in group A and only once group B. FDP levels over 5 mug/ml were detected more often in group A than in group B (p < 0.05). No patient from either group suffered thromboembolism or abnormal bleeding as a postoperative complication.


Open surgery as compared to laparoscopic procedures leads to activation of the clotting system of a higher degree. Although of a lower degree, hypercoagulability is still observed in patients undergoing laparoscopic surgery and, therefore, routine thromboembolic prophylaxis should be considered.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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