Laparoscopic genitourinary surgery utilizing 20 mm Hg intra-abdominal pressure

John B. Adams, Robert G. Moore, Salvatore Micali, Alan P. Marco, Louis R. Kavoussi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Traditional practice has dictated that intra-abdominal pressure during laparoscopy be kept at or below 15 mm Hg to minimize the risk of cardiovascular and pulmonary complications. This study was undertaken to determine if maintaining an intra-abdominal pressure of 20 mm Hg could be utilized safely during genitourinary laparoscopy. We reviewed the intraoperative records of 76 consecutive patients undergoing various endoscopic urologic procedures at an intra-abdominal pressure of 20 mm Hg to assess physiologic changes and complications. The records were examined for operating time, minute ventilation (MV), end-tidal CO2 (ETCO2), and peak inspiratory pressure (PIP), which were compared with the preinsufflation values. Also, in the first 39 patients, initial insufflation volumes were recorded at 15 mm Hg and then again when pressure was raised to 20 mm Hg. The mean operating time was 186 ± 90 min. There was an average 22% increase in the sufflated volume when the pressure was elevated from 15 to 20 mm Hg. To maintain a suitable ETCO2, the anesthesiologist needed to increase the MV an average of 2.9 ± 2.0 L/min. Increases in ETCO2 (average 4.5 ± 4.6 mm Hg) and PIP (6.9 ± 3.6 mm Hg) were noted. In two cases, the intra-abdominal pressure had to be decreased from 20 to 15 mm Hg because of inability to maintain an acceptable ETCO2. Subcutaneous emphysema was noted in three patients, which resolved spontaneously within 24 hr. In one patient, asymptomatic pneumomediastinum was noted after a 6-hr procedure. Intra- abdominal insufflation can be safely maintained at 20 mm Hg in most patients. This higher pressure improves maintenance of the pneumoperitoneum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)131-134
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Laparoendoscopic and Advanced Surgical Techniques - Part A
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery


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