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Surg Endosc. 2017 Nov;31(11):4836-4837. doi: 10.1007/s00464-017-5561-6. Epub 2017 Apr 13.

Laparoscopic radical antegrade modular pancreatosplenectomy for left-sided pancreatic cancer using the ligament of Treitz approach.

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Department of Surgery, Kurashiki Central Hospital, 1-1-1 Miwa, Kurashiki, Okayama, 710-8602, Japan.
Department of Surgery, Kurashiki Central Hospital, 1-1-1 Miwa, Kurashiki, Okayama, 710-8602, Japan.



Laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy (Lap-DP) for benign lesions or those with low malignant potential has been proven safe and effective, and its performance is now widespread [1-3]. Lap-DP for left-sided pancreatic cancer (PC) is also being increasingly performed. According to some reports, Lap-DP has superior short-term outcomes (blood loss, postoperative hospital stay) and comparable oncological outcomes and overall survival with those of open distal pancreatectomy (Op-DP) [4-6]. PC has highly malignant potential; thus, complete resection and sufficient regional lymphadenectomy with tumor-free margins are very important. Radical antegrade modular pancreatosplenectomy (RAMPS) is an accepted standard Op-DP technique for PC and is reportedly useful for achieving R0 resection and radical lymphadenectomy [7-10]. However, laparoscopic RAMPS (Lap-RAMPS) is not yet popular because of its technical difficulty and lack of adequate evidence. Few reports have described the detailed surgical technique of Lap-RAMPS [11-13]. We employ Lap-RAMPS using the ligament of Treitz approach with the benefit of a laparoscopic view and herein describe the usability of this laparoscopic procedure with a video.


Our indication for Lap-RAMPS is left-sided PC located ≥1 cm away from the origin of the splenic artery (SPA) without invasion of the superior mesenteric artery (SMA), celiac artery (CA), common hepatic artery (CHA), or portal vein (PV). We apply either anterior or posterior RAMPS to achieve tumor-free margins. Therefore, the left adrenal gland and the nerve plexus around the SMA and CA are resected depending on the extent of the cancer. Three patients underwent Lap-RAMPS for left-sided PC using the ligament of Treitz approach from April to December 2016. This video shows our Lap-RAMPS procedure performed in a 67-year-old man with pancreatic body cancer who was being followed up for autoimmune pancreatitis. The tumor was suspected to have invaded the SPA, splenic vein, and retroperitoneum but was not close to the SMA, CA, CHA, or PV. The patient was put in the supine position with his legs opened, and the operation was performed using five trocars. Early in the operation, we incised the retroperitoneum just beside the ligament of Treitz, and the inferior vena cava and left renal vein (LRV) were exposed with resection of Gerota's fascia under a good laparoscopic view. The left adrenal gland was resected in this case to obtain sufficient tumor-free margins. The origin of the SMA was easily identified above the LRV. The most posterior dissection was carried out early in the operation, making it easy and safe to determine the resected margin and enabling curative resection with sufficient regional lymphadenectomy. After division of the pancreas with a linear stapler, the lymph nodes around the SMA and CA were safely removed.


The operative time was 358 min, and the estimated blood loss was 1 ml. The postoperative course was uneventful, and the patient was discharged on postoperative day 10. Pathological examination revealed invasive ductal carcinoma (stage III, T3N1M0 according to the 7th edition of the Union for International Cancer Control system) with tumor-free margins. In all three patients, the median operative time and blood loss were 358 (328-451) min and minimal (minimal to 1 ml). One patient underwent anterior RAMPS and the other two patients, including the case mentioned above, underwent posterior RAMPS. One patient developed a grade B pancreatic fistula according to the International Study Group for Pancreatic Fistula (ISGPF) classification, but he recovered promptly with conservative treatment. No life-threatening complications occurred. The median postoperative hospital stay was 14 (10-16) days.


Lap-RAMPS using the ligament of Treitz approach is feasible and extremely helpful in performing minimally invasive, curative resection for well-selected left-sided PC.


Laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy; Pancreatic cancer; RAMPS; Radical antegrade modular pancreatosplenectomy

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