UNLABELLED: Study Type - Therapy (case series)., LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 4. What's known on the subject? and What does the study add? The exact incidence of splenic injury during laparoscopic urologic procedures is not known; however, it is an uncommon occurrence. Also, the optimal treatment algorithm is not well delineated and the efficacy of successfully treating minor injuries to the spleen without resorting to splenectomy is not well described in the urologic literature. This study outlines the rate of splenic injury during a variety of laparoscopic urologic procedures and we outline a treatment algorithm that has been successfully employed in the management of these patients, which in all cases, did not lead to splenectomy. An important point is also that multiple adjunctive hemostatic measures should be used when a splenic injury is recognized and that a thorough search should ensue when suspicion of an occult splenic injury exists, as an unrecognized splenic injury may lead to severe post operative haemorrhagic complications., OBJECTIVE: * To evaluate incidence, risk factors for, and management of intraoperative splenic injury in our laparoscopic patient cohort., PATIENTS AND METHODS: * All patients undergoing laparoscopic urological upper tract procedures at two institutions between January 2001 and April 2006 and January 2000 and December 2008, respectively, were retrospectively examined for complications. * From these patients, those with intraoperative splenic injuries were selected and examined. * Possible factors predisposing patients to splenic injury were evaluated and the management plan for each patient was analysed to identify optimal treatment efficacy., RESULTS: * Of 2620 patients undergoing upper tract urological laparoscopic surgery, 14 patients (0.5%) sustained splenic injury and underwent left-sided surgery, 13 via a transperitoneal approach. * In 12 of the 14 patients, the splenic injury was recognized intraoperatively and all were effectively managed laparoscopically with a combination of argon beam coagulation, biological haemostatic agent FloSeal(TM) (Baxter, Deerfield, IL, USA), and bio-absorbable Surgicel (Johnson and Johnson, Somerville, NJ, USA); none of these patients required splenectomy or developed any postoperative complications. * In two patients, the splenic injury was not recognized intraoperatively; both patients presented with delayed haemorrhage necessitating open splenectomy in each instance., CONCLUSIONS: * Splenic injuries are uncommon during laparoscopic urological surgery, but when a significant splenic injury occurs, it can be effectively managed laparoscopically, using conservative measures, without need for splenectomy. * If the splenic injury is not recognized intraoperatively, delayed haemorrhage is likely to occur necessitating emergent re-exploration and splenectomy. * Prompt and accurate intraoperative diagnosis of splenic injury is critical for achieving a good outcome.Copyright © 2010 THE AUTHORS. BJU INTERNATIONAL © 2010 BJU INTERNATIONAL.
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