The objective of this study was to evaluate the role of laparoscopy in selecting candidates for complete cytoreduction surgery in epithelial ovarian carcinoma. We performed an explorative laparoscopy in 15 women presenting with advanced ovarian carcinoma, and for whom the preoperative evaluation was considered unsatisfactory, to define the possibility of achieving a complete cytoreduction. We focused on three sites of carcinomatosis: bowel, liver pedicle, and right diaphragmatic dome. Laparoscopic evaluation was successful in all 15 patients. Four patients were considered to have unresectable carcinomatosis because of extensive involvement of the small bowel and therefore had no laparotomy. These women underwent neoadjuvant chemotherapy in the following 2 weeks. Eleven patients were considered to have resectable peritoneal carcinomatosis (PC). Ten women had no macroscopic residual tumor after surgery. A modified posterior exenteration was performed in five patients. The laparoscopic exploration had underestimated the liver pedicle involvement in two patients, but only one had an infracentimetric residual tumor after surgery. Laparoscopy is a reliable method of exploring PC in advanced-stage ovarian cancer. Laparoscopy may obviate the need for unnecessary laparotomy in many cases and may, therefore, contribute to a better quality of life for patients found to have unresectable disease.
- ovarian carcinoma
- peritoneal carcinomatosis
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