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This article is the author’s final published version in Hepatoma Research, Volume 8, March 2022, Article number 9.

The published version is available at Copyright © Khouzam et al.


Aim: The purpose of this study is to assess the benefit of laparoscopic liver resection (LLR) for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) given recurrence and future need for liver transplantation (LT). Methods: Data on liver resections were gathered from the Istituto di Ricovero e Cura a Carattere Scientifico-Istituto Mediterraneo per i Trapianti e Terapie ad alta specializzazione (IRCCS-ISMETT) from 2003-2021. A retrospective analysis of 1408 consecutive adult patients who had a liver resection was performed with categorization based on the underlying disease process. A sub-analysis studied the 291 patients who had an LLR with an intention to transplant approach after LLR. Results: From 2012 to 2020, ISMETT’s mean annual LLR rate was 45%. Data suggests that a laparoscopic approach to iterative surgical treatment for HCC has demonstrated protective benefits. Compared to open surgery or LT, LLR is protective against the risk of de-listing, post-transplant patient death, tumor recurrence, adhesions, and bleeding in a cirrhotic patient. Kaplan Meier’s analysis showed no difference between post-LT survival curves for those with prior open abdominal surgery or LLR (P = 0.658). Conclusion: Laparoscopic surgery has important protective advantages over laparotomy surgery for the surgical treatment of HCC, particularly since treatment is not always curative. LLR can be considered a bridge therapy for transplantation, ensuring less crowding of waiting lists, a desirable condition in areas of donor storage.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.