Passage of Gallstones Into Common Bile Duct During Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy: Is It the Surgeon’s Responsibility?

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Gallstones patients without preoperative history of jaundice, deranged liver function tests, or dilated bile ducts (BD) are unlikely to have BD stones. However, some of these patients in our series underwent endoscopic stone(s) removal after laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC). We aim to find the incidence, possible intraoperative risk factors, and if the Surgeon can be blamed for this event.

Materials and Methods:

We studied LC cases over 12-year period at our university hospital and identified patients who did not have preoperative risk factors for BD stones but developed postoperative jaundice and/or persistent abdominal pain.


Only 16 (0.7%) of 2390 LC met the inclusion criteria. In 5/16 patients, cystic duct (CD) stones were felt Intraoperatively and likely passed into BD during surgery. After surgery, 14/16 patients underwent endoscopic stone(s) removal.


If CD stone(s) are encountered during LC, we suggest that careful attention should be paid to make sure that patient does not develop complications from possible BD stone(s). Technical precautions during LC (ie, early CD clipping, avoiding excessive manipulation, and crushing the stones) are recommended.

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