Background. Pediatric surgery is now in the forefront of minimal access procedures. Although pediatric surgeons have been skeptic about laparoscopic splenectomy, recently minimally invasive approach for spleen removal has been revaluated also in young patients. Purpose of this study was to report Authors’ personal experience in patients under eighteen who underwent laparoscopic splenectomy. Results of the procedure were evaluated.
Patients and ethods. A retrospective review was undertaken in 18 splenectomised patients under the age of eighteen. Indications were hereditary spherocytosis in 10 patients, β-thalassemia in 4, idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura in 3 and a splenic cyst in 1 child.
Results. No intra-operative complications occurred. No conversion to open surgery was reported. During the follow-up one case of portal vein thrombosis, treated by medical therapy, was encountered and no other postoperative complications were observed.
Conclusions. Laparoscopic approach has to be preferable for all those children undergoing spleen surgery. In experienced hands, it is of beneficial effects with a very reasonable rate of complications.
KEY WORDS: Laparoscopic splenectomy - Pediatric surgery - Spleen diseases.