Background/Aims: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the clinical utility of laparoscopic surgery for gastric submucosal tumor. Methods: The records of 11 patients who underwent laparoscopic wedge resection (LR group) for gastric submucosal tumors were reviewed and compared with those of 8 patients who underwent open surgery (OS group). Results: Mean operation time was 145 ± 43 min in the LR group and 127 ± 33 min in the OS group (p = 0.301). Mean blood loss was 97 ± 107 and 107 ± 47 g, respectively (p = 0.387). Patients in the LR group began walking 1.4 ± 0.7 days after surgery, which was significantly earlier than those in the OS group (2.7 ± 1.3 days, p = 0.021). The first flatus (1.5 ± 0.5 vs. 3.1 ± 0.6 days, respectively, p = 0.0004) and resumption of oral food intake (3.0 ± 1.7 vs. 4.3 ± 0.9 days, respectively, p = 0.020) were also earlier in the LR group. White blood cell count on the first postoperative day was lower (7,000 ± 2,100 vs. 11,900 ± 3,580/mm3, respectively, p = 0.004) in the LR group than in the OS group, and the duration of fever (>38.0°C; 0.1 ± 0.3 vs. 0.9 ± 0.8 days, respectively, p = 0.014) and the period of postoperative hospitalization (13.2 ± 3.7 vs. 20.8 ± 6.1 days, respectively, p = 0.014) were significantly shorter in the LR group than in the OS group. No complications occurred in either group. Conclusion: Laparoscopic surgery was superior to open surgery in terms of postoperative recovery time with comparable operation time and blood loss. Laparoscopic wedge resection is a promising surgical alternative for the treatment of gastric submucosal tumors.
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