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Surg Endosc. 2014 Apr;28(4):1131-5. doi: 10.1007/s00464-013-3289-5. Epub 2013 Nov 8.

A prospective, randomized, controlled, trial comparing occult-scar incision laparoscopic cholecystectomy and classic three-port laparoscopic cholecystectomy.

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Department of Hepatobiliary Surgery, Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, 510120, Guangdong Province, China,



This study was designed to evaluate the outcome of laparoscopic cholecystectomy by comparing a new technique using occult-scar incision for laparoscopic cholecystectomy (OSLC) with classic three-port laparoscopic cholecystectomy (CLC). In the occult-scar incision, we moved the subcostal and subxiphoid trocar insertion sites to the suprapubic area so that operative scars were hidden in the pubic hairs and below umbilicus.


Between July 2009 and 2012, patients undergoing laparoscopic cholecystectomy were randomized to the OSLC or CLC approach after obtaining informed consent. Outcome was measured by operative time, operative complications, hospital length of stay, cost, analgesia required after surgery, and cosmetic outcomes. The patient satisfaction score (PSS) and visual analog score (VAS) also were used to evaluated the level of cosmetic result and postoperative pain.


A total of 75 patients were randomized into CLC (n = 35) and OSLC (n = 40) groups. No patient was converted to an open procedure in either the CLC or OSLC group. No operative complications were reported within 30 days in either group. The PSS of 7 and 30 days after surgery were both significantly higher in the OSLC group than in the CLC group (5.8 ± 1.5 vs. 8.0 ± 1.1, P = 0.03; 6.5 ± 1.2 vs. 9.2 ± 0.8, P = 0.02). The VAS for pain was significantly lower in the OSLC group on postoperative day 3 compared with the CLC group (2.6 ± 1.2 vs. 6.3 ± 0.9, P = 0.01). There was no significant difference in operative time, hospital stay, and cost between the two groups.


The OSLC is a safe and feasible alternative compared with CLC in experienced hands, and it is superior for outcomes regarding pain control and cosmesis.

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