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J Laparoendosc Adv Surg Tech A. 2010 Jul-Aug;20(6):511-4. doi: 10.1089/lap.2010.0228.

SILS and NOTES cholecystectomy: a tailored approach.

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General and Oncologic Surgery Unit, Faculty of Medicine, University of Messina, G. Martino University Hospital, Messina, Italy.



Natural orifice transluminal endoscopic surgery (NOTES) and single-incision laparoscopic surgery (SILS) have been proposed as different solutions to further minimize the invasiveness of laparoscopy. In this article, we present our experience with NOTES and SILS over the last few years, trying to focus on identifying which technique should be offered to which patients at the beginning of 2010.


Between January 2009 and January 2010, 100 patients were diagnosed with symptomatic cholelithiasis at our department. Considering our positive previous experiences with NOTES and SILS, we offered the hybrid NOTES approach to women over 40 years with no previous pelvic surgery or history of inflammatory pelvic disease and SILS to male patients and women excluded from the hybrid NOTES approach, with previous surgery in the upper right quadrant and gallbladder empyema being the main contraindications.


Twenty-six patients accepted the SILS or NOTES approach instead of standard laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC). Seventy-four patients underwent standard LC via four trocars. In the hybrid NOTES transvaginal cholecystectomy, there were no problems or complications related to the culdotomy, trocar, or stay suture placement. There were no conversions, and all the procedures were performed as planned without complications. In the SILS cholecystectomy, there were no problems or complications related to the trocar or stay sutures placement. All the procedure were completed without complications.


NOTES and SILS are promising techniques that need new, dedicated instrumentations to reduce technical limitations. Randomized studies comparing SILS/NOTES and traditional laparoscopy are necessary to evaluate safety, efficacy, and potential benefits.

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