Laparoscopic Versus Open Re-operations Within 30 Days After Lower Gastrointestinal Tract Surgery: a Retrospective Comparative Study



Re-operations within 30 days after lower gastrointestinal tract surgery are associated to high morbidity and mortality. Laparoscopic approach has been reported as feasible and safe in selected patients, but comparative data to laparotomy are scarce. The aim of this study was to review our experience in laparoscopic re-operations and compare it to laparotomy.


From January 2012 to December 2016, patients undergoing a re-operation within one month after lower gastrointestinal tract surgery were included and divided into laparoscopy and laparotomy groups. The primary endpoint was successful re-operation, defined as recovery without any of the following: conversion to laparotomy, need of further invasive treatments or death. Secondary outcomes were the length of hospital stay and 30-day morbidity and mortality. Demographic, clinical and surgical characteristics were collected and analyzed.


Out of 114 patients who underwent a re-operation, 71 met the inclusion criteria. Thirty (42%) patients underwent laparoscopy and 41 (58%) laparotomy. Thirty (42%) patients were male and median age was 72.0 years-old. The initial operation was elective in 24 (34%) patients, and 50% of the initial operations were colorectal resections in both groups. Multivariate analyses showed that type of approach did not affect the re-operation success rate. Laparotomy was an independent predictor of prolonged hospital stay (OR 3.582, 95%CI 1.191–10.776, p = 0.023) and mortality (OR 13.123, 95%CI 1.301–131.579, p = 0.029).


Re-operations within 30 days after lower gastrointestinal tract surgery may be safe in selected patients, as effective as laparotomy, and associated with shorter hospital stay and lower mortality rates.

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Correspondence to Francesco Mongelli.

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All authors have no conflicts of interest or financial ties to disclose. All authors have contributed significantly to the content of the article and it was read and approved by all authors.


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Ethical standards

Written non-opposition consents were administered to patients and the local the local ethics committee approved the study (Comitato Etico Cantonale Ticino num. 2017–02,153 CE 3304) in compliance with the actual Swiss ethical requirements.

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Sona Deretti and Francesco Mongelli contributed equally to the paper.

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Deretti, S., Mongelli, F., Staccini, G. et al. Laparoscopic Versus Open Re-operations Within 30 Days After Lower Gastrointestinal Tract Surgery: a Retrospective Comparative Study. World J Surg (2021).

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