Author(s): Jorgensen JO, Gillies RB, Hunt DR, Caplehorn JR, Lumley T
The aims of this study were to see if laparoscopic cholecystectomy is associated with a similar postoperative pain pattern to gynaecological laparoscopy and to see whether the use of a suprahepatic suction drain makes recovery from laparoscopic cholecystectomy more comfortable. After routine laparoscopic cholecystectomy and insertion of a suprahepatic suction drain, patients were randomized to suction or no suction on the drain. The time course of the severity of wound, abdominal and shoulder tip pain was assessed by visual analogue scales administered in the morning and afternoon of the first 3 postoperative days. The control group had a high incidence of shoulder tip pain similar to that after gynaecological laparoscopy. Patients in the treatment group reported significantly less shoulder tip pain than the control group (O.R. 0.16, 95\% CI, 0.06-0.40). There was a tendency for the treatment group to report reduced abdominal and, to a lesser extent, wound pain. The authors recommend suprahepatic suction as a simple and more effective way to improve patient comfort after laparoscopic cholecystectomy.