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1.  Mini-laparoscopic versus laparoscopic approach to appendectomy 
BMC Surgery  2001;1:4.
The purpose of this clinical study is to evaluate the feasibility of using 2-mm laparoscopic instruments to perform an appendectomy in patients with clinically suspected acute appendicitis and compare the outcome of this mini-laparoscopic or "needlescopic" approach to the conventional laparoscopic appendectomy.
Two groups of patients undergoing appendectomy over 24 months were studied. In the first group, needlescopic appendectomy was performed in 15 patients by surgeons specializing in advanced laparoscopy. These patients were compared with the second or control group that included 21 consecutive patients who underwent laparoscopic appendectomy. We compared the patients' demographic data, operative findings, complications, postoperative pain medicine requirements, length of hospital stay, and recovery variables. Differences were considered statistically significant at a p-value < 0.05.
Patient demographics, history of previous abdominal surgery, and operative findings were similar in both groups. There was no conversion to open appendectomy in either group. No postoperative morbidity or mortality occurred in either group. The needlescopic group had a significantly shorter mean operative time (p = 0.02), reduced postoperative narcotics requirements (p = 0.05), shorter hospital stay (p = 0.04), and quicker return to work (p = 0.03) when compared with the laparoscopic group.
We conclude that the needlescopic technique is a safe and effective approach to appendectomy. When performed by experienced laparoscopic surgeons, the needlescopic technique results in significantly shorter postoperative convalescence and a prompt recovery.
PMCID: PMC59899  PMID: 11716795
2.  Open tension free repair of inguinal hernias; the Lichtenstein technique 
BMC Surgery  2001;1:3.
Recurrences have been a significant problem following hernia repair. Prosthetic materials have been increasingly used in hernia repair to prevent recurrences. Their use has been associated with several advantages, such as less postoperative pain, rapid recovery, low recurrence rates.
In this retrospective study, 540 tension-free inguinal hernia repairs were performed between August 1994 and December 1999 in 510 patients, using a polypropylene mesh (Lichtenstein technique). The main outcome measure was early and late morbidity and especially recurrence.
Inguinal hernia was indirect in 55 % of cases (297 patients), direct in 30 % (162 patients) and of the pantaloon (mixed) type in 15 % (81 patients). Mean patient age was 53.7 years (range, 18 – 85). Follow-up was completed in 407 patients (80 %) by clinical examination or phone call. The median follow-up period was 3.8 years (range, 1 – 6 years). Seroma and hematoma formation requiring drainage was observed in 6 and 2 patients, respectively, while transient testicular swelling occurred in 5 patients. We have not observed acute infection or abscess formation related to the presence of the foreign body (mesh). In two patients, however, a delayed rejection of the mesh occurred 10 months and 4 years following surgery. There was one recurrence of the hernia (in one of these patients with late mesh rejection) (recurrence rate = 0.2 %). Postoperative neuralgia was observed in 5 patients (1 %).
Lichtenstein tension-free mesh inguinal hernia repair is a simple, safe, comfortable, effective method, with extremely low early and late morbidity and remarkably low recurrence rate and therefore it is our preferred method for hernia repair since 1994.
PMCID: PMC59657  PMID: 11696246
3.  Laparoscopic and open surgery for pheochromocytoma 
BMC Surgery  2001;1:2.
Laparoscopic adrenalectomy is a promising alternative to open surgery although concerns exist in regard to laparoscopic treatment of pheocromocytoma. This report compares the outcome of laparoscopic and conventional (open) resection for pheocromocytoma particular in regard to intraoperative hemodynamic stability and postoperative patient comfort.
Seven patients laparoscopically treated (1997–2000) and nine patients treated by open resection (1990–1996) at the National Hospital (Rikshospitalet), Oslo. Peroperative hemodynamic stability including need of vasoactive drugs was studied. Postoperative analgesic medication, complications and hospital stay were recorded.
No laparoscopic resections were converted to open procedure. Patients laparoscopically treated had fewer hypertensive episodes (median 1 vs. 2) and less need of vasoactive drugs peroperatively than patients conventionally operated. There was no difference in operative time between the two groups (median 110 min vs. 125 min for adrenal pheochromocytoma and 235 vs. 210 min for paraganglioma). Postoperative need of analgesic medication (1 vs. 9 patients) and hospital stay (median 3 vs. 6 days) were significantly reduced in patients laparoscopically operated compared to patients treated by the open technique.
Surgery for pheochromocytoma can be performed laparoscopically with a safety comparable to open resection. However, improved hemodynamic stability peroperatively and less need of postoperative analgesics favour the laparoscopic approach. In experienced hands the laparoscopic technique is concluded to be the method of choice also for pheocromocytoma.
PMCID: PMC57005  PMID: 11580870
4.  Percutaneous treatment of chronic MRSA osteomyelitis with a novel plant-derived antiseptic 
BMC Surgery  2001;1:1.
Antibiotic-resistant bacteria such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant enterococcus (VRE, are an increasing problem world-wide, causing intractable wound infections. Complex phytochemical extracts such as tea tree oil and eucalypt-derived formulations have been shown to have strong bactericidal activity against MRSA in vitro. Polytoxinol (PT) antimicrobial, is the trade name of a range of antimicrobial preparations in solution, ointment and cream form.
We report the first use of this drug, administered percutaneously, via calcium sulphate pellets (Osteoset,TM), into bone, to treat an intractable MRSA infection of the lower tibia in an adult male.
Results and Discussion
Over a three month period his symptoms resolved with a healing response on x-ray and with a reduced CRP.
PMCID: PMC32179  PMID: 11368798

Results 1-4 (4)