Smaller surgical incisions have recently been introduced in living donor liver procurement. This study used national data from Japan to clarify the present status of surgical incisions in living donor liver procurement.Methods
A nationwide, questionnaire-based survey related to 3121 donors and recipients was used. Donors were divided into 2 groups: left lateral segment graft (LLSG) procurement (n = 690) and other types (n = 2431). Incisions were classified into 6 types: type I, upper midline and bilateral subcostal; type II, upper midline and right subcostal; type III, upper midline and right subcostal to the right lateral margin of the abdominal rectus muscle; type IV, upper midline without laparoscopy; type V, upper midline with laparoscopy; and type VI, lower abdominal using the full laparoscopic technique. Types I, II, and III were regarded as standard, and types IV, V, and VI as small incisions.Results
In LLSGs, blood transfusion and postoperative complication rates were significantly less frequent in the small incision group than in the standard group. In other graft types, there were no significant differences in blood transfusion, postoperative complication, and recipients’ graft loss rates. The rates of wound extension during surgery were 2.8% and 2.1% in the small incision group in LLSGs and in other graft types, respectively. A small incision was adapted more frequently and postoperative complications were less common in high-volume centers.Conclusions
Various incisions have been adopted in living donor liver procurement. Donor safety and graft integrity appear to have been retained for donors receiving small incisions.