Laparoscopic versus open appendectomy in children with complicated appendicitis in a tertiary teaching hospital

Pramod Sreekantamurthy, Bhavana Chinmayee, Sharath .


Background: Acute appendicitis in children is the most common surgical emergency. Good outcomes have been reported with laparoscopic appendectomy (LA) in children for uncomplicated appendicitis. But the use of laparoscopy for complicated appendicitis in children is more controversial. Higher incidences of postoperative abdominal and wound infections have been reported. The purpose of this study was to retrospectively compare LA and open appendectomy (OA) for complicated appendicitis in children.

Methods: The outcome of 73 patients with complicated appendicitis was retrospectively analyzed. There were 36 children in the LA group and 37 in the OA group. Data collection included demographics, duration of symptoms, type of complicated appendicitis, operative time, resumption of diet, early and late complication, length of hospitalization and duration of antibiotic use.

Results: No significant difference was found with respect to age, duration of symptoms and total leucocyte count between two groups.  The operative time for LA (55.83±4.81 minutes for LA versus 67.16±4.27 minutes for OA; p=0.0001) was shorter. Patients in the LA group returned to oral intake earlier (2.83±0.31 days for LA versus 3.84±0.33 days for OA; p=0.001) and had a shorter length of hospital stay (5.11±0.55 days for LA versus 7.92±1.06 days for OA; p=0.0001).  The incidence of wound infection in group LA was 5.5% compared to 18.9% in OA group.

Conclusions: The laparoscopic technique for complicated appendicitis in children is feasible, safe. Laparoscopic appendectomy should be the initial procedure of choice for most cases of complicated appendicitis in children.


Complicated appendicitis, Laparoscopic appendectomy, Open appendectomy, Wound infection

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