Background. A new concept of surgical stress has been proposed that consists of both aggressiveness of operation and systemic reactions to an operation. Methods and Results. We have investigated a possible modulation of such systemic reactions to operation and have demonstrated the following 3 points: (1) coagulation and fibrinolytic systems are independently activated during hepatectomy and such activation can be modulated by protease inhibitors such as nafamostat mesilate and antithrombin III; (2) elevated thromboxane A2 during hepatectomy is characterized in the prostanoid system, the elevation of thromboxane A2 is inhibited by thromboxane A2 synthetase inhibitor, and postoperative liver injury is reduced; (3) cytokine response induced by hepatectomy is modulated by preoperative administration of methylprednisolone, leading to possible prevention of bacterial translocation. Therefore, modulating systemic reactions to hepatectomy may be important for successful minimally invasive hepatectomy. Another important option for minimally invasive hepatectomy is the use of operative procedures such as laparoscope or thoracoscope. We have investigated the usefulness of a laparoscopic hepatectomy from the standpoints of early and long-term outcome after hepatectomy. Laparoscopic hepatectomy, which is a difficult and dangerous procedure, can be a feasible option and can result in better short-term outcome and a similar long-term outcome after hepatectomy when compared with conventional open hepatectomy. Therefore, the laparoscopic approach is also a viable option for minimally invasive hepatectomy. Conclusions. Modulation of systemic reactions to the operation itself and laparoscopic hepatectomy may be new strategies for performing minimally invasive hepatectomy.
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