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AIM: The aim of this study was to evaluate retrospectively our results for laparoscopic liver resection (LLR) of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) including lesions in the posterosuperior segments of the liver in terms of feasibility, outcome, recurrence and survival.
MATERIAL OF STUDY: Between June 2005 and May 2009, we performed 22 LLR for HCC. The underlying cirrhosis was staged as Child A in 19 cases and Child B in 3. RESULTS: LLR included a non anatomic resection in 15 cases and an anatomic resection in 7. A conversion to laparotomy occurred in one (4.5%) patient for hemorrhage. Mortality and morbidity rates were 0% and 18.1% (4/20). Over a mean follow-up period of 29 months (range: 19–65 months), 11 (50%) patients presented recurrence, mainly at distance from the surgical site.
DISCUSSION: A laparoscopic approach is more suitable when the lesion is located in the peripheral “laparoscopic” segments 2 to 6. Nevertheless, six resections were made in the posterosuperior segments. Although parenchymal-sparing resection is required by the presence of underlying liver disease, anatomic resection has always to be considered and pursued to reduce local recurrence. In our series the recurrence rate was similar to those reported for other laparoscopic studies and for open resection of HCC.
CONCLUSIONS: LLR for HCC in selected patients is a safe procedure with good short-term results. It can also be proposed in tumor locations with a difficult surgical access maintaining a low morbidity rate and good oncologic adequacy. This approach could have an impact on the therapeutic strategy of HCC complicating cirrhosis as a treatment with curative intent or as a bridge to liver transplantation.