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Transvaginal cholecystectomy versus single-incision laparoscopic cholecystectomy versus four-port laparoscopic cholecystectomy: a prospective cohort study



This report describes the first prospective cohort study comparing transvaginal cholecystectomies (TVC) with single incision laparoscopic cholecystectomies (SILC) and four-port laparoscopic cholecystectomies (4PLC).


Between May 2009 and August 2010, 14 patients underwent a TVC. These patients were compared with patients who underwent SILC (22 patients) or 4PLC (11 patients) in a concurrent, randomized, controlled trial. Demographic data, operative time, numerical pain scales, complications, and return to work were recorded.


Mean age (TVC: 33.5 ± 3.0 year; SILC: 38.4 ± 3.3 year; 4PLC: 35.5 ± 4.1 year; p = 0.58) and mean BMI (TVC: 28.8 ± 1.5 kg/m2; SILC: 31.8 ± 1 kg/m2; 4PLC: 31.4 ± 2.2 kg/m2; p = 0.35) were not statistically significant. However, mean operative time (TVC: 67 ± 3.9 min; SILC: 48.9 ± 2.6 min; 4PLC: 42.3 ± 3.9 min; p < 0.001) was significantly longer for TVC. Numerical pain scales showed significantly lower pain scores on POD 1 and 3 for TVC compared with SILC and 4PLC (TVC: 4.1 ± 0.5 and 2.9 ± 0.7; SILC: 6.1 ± 0.5 and 5.3 ± 0.5; 4PLC: 5.7 ± 0.4 and 4.7 ± 0.3; p = 0.02) with equilibration of pain scores by days 14 and 30. Return to work (TVC: 6.4 ± 1.5 days; SILC: 13.1 ± 1.3 days; 4PLC: 14.1 ± 1.4 days; p < 0.001) also was significantly faster for patients in the TVC group. One conversion in the TVC group to a 4PLC was necessary due to adhesions within the pelvis. One dislodged IUD was seen and immediately replaced in the TVC group. One hernia was observed in the SILC group.


Transvaginal cholecystectomy is a safe and well-tolerated procedure with statistically significantly less pain at 1 and 3 days after surgery, with a faster return to work but longer operative times compared with single incision and four-port laparoscopic cholecystectomy.

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Dr. Roberts is a paid consultant to Covidien and the founder of Novatract. Drs. Solomon, Shariff, Silasi, Duffy, and Bell have no conflict of interest or financial disclosures.

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Correspondence to Daniel Solomon.

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Covidien provided partial funding for this trial.

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Solomon, D., Shariff, A.H., Silasi, D. et al. Transvaginal cholecystectomy versus single-incision laparoscopic cholecystectomy versus four-port laparoscopic cholecystectomy: a prospective cohort study. Surg Endosc 26, 2823–2827 (2012).

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  • Cholecystectomy
  • Clinical papers/trials/research