Cholangiography is often crucial for establishing the definitive diagnosis in infants with prolonged jaundice. Here, we describe our protocol of using the two-hole laparoscopic technique and discuss its benefits.
144 consecutive patients with suspected biliary atresia were included in this retrospective study. A 5-mm umbilical port is introduced for a 30° laparoscope. An additional 5-mm trocar was inserted at right subcostal incision. A liver biopsy was performed first if needed. The fundus of gallbladder was then exteriorized through the incision of the working port after pneumoperitoneum was released and a catheter is inserted into the gallbladder for cholangiography.
The average duration of operation was 34 min (range 20–55 min). Laparoscopic cholangiography failed in 21 cases (14.6%) where atrophic gallbladder was found and BA was confirmed by subsequent laparotomy. For the remaining 123 cases, biliary atresia were diagnosed in 88 (71.5%), biliary hypoplasia in 14 (11.4%), and cholestasis in 21 (17.1%), respectively. There was no bleeding or any other complications intraoperatively.
The technique of laparoscopic cholecystocholangiography is simple, safe and efficient. It can provide an accurate diagnosis. Furthermore, for patients without biliary atresia, unnecessary laparotomy can be avoided.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.