Laparoscopic splenectomy has become the gold standard in children

Frederick J. Rescorla, Scott A. Engum, Karen W. West, L. R.Tres Scherer, Thomas M. Rouse, Jay L. Grosfeld

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

70 Scopus citations


Splenectomy is frequently required in children with various hematologic disorders. The reported advantages of laparoscopic Splenectomy (LS) include less pain, shorter hospital stay, and improved cosmesis. This report evaluates the outcome of children undergoing LS at a single children's facility. One hundred twelve children underwent LS by the lateral approach between August 1995 and February 2001. Indications for LS were hereditary spherocytosis in 58, idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura in 21, sickle cell disease in 19, and other conditions in 14. LS alone was completed in 89 children and LS and cholecystectomy (LSC) in 20. Three required conversion to open Splenectomy. Accessory spleens were identified in 19. Complications included ileus (four), acute chest syndrome (four), bleeding (two), pneumonia (one), and diaphragm perforation (one). There was no mortality. An accessory spleen was missed in one child with recurrent anemia. Average operative time for LS was 106 minutes and for LSC 135 minutes. Operative time for LS decreased with experience but the difference was not significant. Average length of stay was 1.51 days (range 1-11) and was longer in sickle cell disease (2.47 days) versus hereditary spherocytosis (1.29 days) and idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (1.16 days). We conclude that LS is safe and effective in children with hematologic disorders and is associated with minimal morbidity, zero mortality, and a short length of stay.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)297-301
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Surgeon
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 1 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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