Several reports claim that there is a risk that laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC) might worsen the prognosis of unsuspected gallbladder cancer.
Several factors rather than LC could influence prognosis.
A retrospective clinicopathologic study was performed on 20 patients, 9 patients (3 men and 6 women, aged from 36 to 75 years [mean age, 62.3 years]) undergoing LC and 11 patients (2 men and 9 women, aged from 53 to 91 years [mean age, 65.3 years]) undergoing open cholecystectomy (OC), with postoperatively diagnosed gallbladder cancer. The correlation was evaluated between cumulative survival rates and the following 7 prognostic factors: age, sex, histopathological grade, pathologic stage, occurrence of bile spillage, type of cholecystectomy (LC or OC), and additional surgical treatments.
Seven patients (87%) after LC and 9 patients (82%) after OC had cancer recurrence: the difference is of no statistical significance (P = .9). There were no recurrences of cancer in the abdominal wall after either LC or OC. Survival rate was statistically correlated to tumor stage (P = .007) and to the occurrence of bile spillage (P = .002). Survival rate did not change according to whether the operation was carried out using LC or OC (P = .60).
These results would seem to lend support to the opinion that LC does not worsen the prognosis for unsuspected gallbladder cancer.