Background: The combination of sclerotherapy with surgical salvage for sclerotherapy-resistant esophagogastric varices has recently received much attention, however, the longterm results after such an operation have yet to be reported. This is a preliminary report of a laparoscopic adaptation of a previously described surgical procedure for the treatment of refractory esophagogastric varices. Study Design: Laparoscopic gastric devascularization and splenectomy (Hassab's operation) was successfully performed to treat recurrent sclerotherapy-resistant giant esophageal varices (n = 4) and recurrent rebleeding gastric varices (n = 6). The patients included 8 men and 2 women who ranged in age from 35 to 67 years (average, 54.2 years). The procedure and clinical results were evaluated from various viewpoints. Results: The duration of the operation ranged from 200 to 400 minutes (mean ± standard deviation; 287.5 ± 66.0 minutes) and blood loss from 10 to 1,500 mL (average, 515.5 ± 507.9 mL). The weight of the spleen ranged from 500 to 850 g (average 608.0 ± 126.6 g). Conversion to minimal open operation with a gasless lifting method was done in 1 patient because of uncontrolled bleeding from the splenic vein. There were no other major complications either intraoperatively or postoperatively. All patients had hypersplenism; preoperatire platelet counts ranged from 1.6 to 6.8 x 104/μL (average, 4.5 ± 2.7 x 104 μL) and the postoperative count was from 5.9 to 36.0 x 104/μL (average, 21.7 ± 11.5 x 104 μL). Postoperative endoscopy revealed that varices disappeared, and no patient had recurrence of the varices after operation during the mean followup period of 12.8 ± 4.1 months (average, 8 to 20 months). Conclusions: The combination of laparoscopic gastric devascularization and splenectomy for sclerotherapyresistant esophagogastric varices is considered a feasible and relatively safe surgical method for patients with hypersplenism.
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