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Canadian Respiratory Journal
Volume 5, Issue 2, Pages 109-113
Original Article

Lung volumes 24 Hours after Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy — Justification for Early Discharge

Jameel Ali and Theophilus J Gana

Department of Surgery, University of Toronto, St Michael’s Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Copyright © 1998 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


OBJECTIVE: To compare lung volumes after laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC) and open cholecystectomy (OC).

DESIGN: Prospective study with matched historical controls.

SETTING: Referral teaching hospital.

SUBJECTS: Twenty-six healthy female subjects (age 20 to 40 years), 13 of whom had LC.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Vital capacity (VC, % predicted), functional residual capacity (FRC, % predicted) and analgesic frequency (mean ± SD) over the first 24 h.

RESULTS: Immediately after operation, FRC was similarly depressed to 80.4±1.8% in the OC group and 80.8±2.3% in the LC group. After 24 h FRC fell to 70.5±1.9% in the OC group and increased to 91.3±2.4% in the LC group. VC fell immediately postoperation to 41.4±4.8% in the OC group but to only 62.2±1.9% in the LC group. By 24 h, VC improved slightly to 52.5±2.7% in the OC group but returned to normal, 99.0±3.2%, in the LC group. Postoperative analgesic frequency over 24 h was less in the LC group, 3.3±0.8 versus 5.0±0.8.

CONCLUSION: Depression in lung volume is less with LC. A VC that returned to normal and a FRC level not usually associated with pulmonary complications support the practice of discharging LC patients by 24 h postoperation.