The impact of uncomplicated and complicated diverticulitis on laparoscopic surgery conversion rates and patient outcomes

Imran Hassan, Robert R. Cima, David Larson, Eric Dozois, Megan M. O'Byrne, Dirk R. Larson, John H. Pemberton

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36 Scopus citations


Background: The aim of this analysis was to determine the impact of complicated and uncomplicated diverticulitis on conversion rates and complications in patients undergoing laparoscopic surgery (LS) for diverticular disease. Methods: Between 1993 and 2004, 125 patients underwent LS [91 laparoscopic-assisted (LA) and 34 hand-assisted (HA) colectomy for diverticular disease, 79 uncomplicated and 46 complicated]. Cases not completed laparoscopically were considered converted. Complicated diverticulitis was defined as diverticular disease associated with abscess, fistula, bleeding or stricture. Results: The mean age was 59 years with 67 (54%) men with a mean follow-up of 23 months. The conversion rate was 26% (33 patients). The only factor independently associated with conversion was a history of previous abdominal surgery (37% vs. 14%, p = 0.004). Among the subset of patients undergoing surgery for uncomplicated diverticulitis, the number of diverticulitis episodes (DE), the time between the first and last DE, and the time between the last DE and surgery, were not significantly associated with conversion. Early complications (<30 days from surgery) occurred in 30 (25%) patients. Twenty-one long-term complications (>30 days from surgery) occurred in 20 patients and the one and two-year cumulative probabilities of these complications were 14% and 22%, respectively. Early complications were significantly higher among patients requiring conversion (44% vs. 24%, p = 0.04) but were not significantly higher among patients with complicated diverticulitis (39% vs. 24%, p = 0.11). The rates of long-term complications were not significantly higher among patients that required conversion or had complicated diverticulitis (one-year rate 23% vs. 11%, p = 0.47; 18% vs. 13%, p = 0.70). Conclusions: A previous history of abdominal surgery was associated with a higher conversion rate in patients undergoing laparoscopic surgery for diverticular disease. Long-term patient outcomes are not adversely impacted by laparoscopic surgery for complicated diverticulitis or laparoscopic surgery requiring conversion to an open procedure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1690-1694
Number of pages5
JournalSurgical Endoscopy and Other Interventional Techniques
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2007



  • Clinical papers
  • Colon
  • Research
  • Trials

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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