Background Central venous pressure (CVP) is used as a marker of cardiac preload to control intraoperative blood loss in open hepatectomies, while its reliability in laparoscopy is less certain. The aim of this randomized prospective trial was to evaluate the outcome of laparoscopic resections performed with stroke volume variation (SVV) or CVP monitoring. Methods All candidates for laparoscopic liver resection were assigned randomly to SVV or to CVP groups. Outcome was evaluated included conversion rate, cause of conversion, intraoperative blood loss, need for transfusions, length of surgery and postoperative results. Results Ninety consecutive patients were enrolled: both SVV and CVP groups included 45 patients each and were comparable in terms of patient and disease characteristics. A reduced rate of conversion was recorded in the SVV compared to the CVP group (6.7% and 17.8% respectively, p = 0.02). Blood loss was lower in the SVV group (150 mL), compared to the CVP group (300 mL, p = 0.04). Morbidity, mortality, length of stay and functional recovery were comparable. On multivariate analysis, lesion location, extent of hepatectomy and type of cardiac preload monitoring were associated significantly to risk of conversion. Conclusion SVV monitoring in laparoscopic liver surgery improves intraoperative outcome, thus enhancing the benefits of the minimally-invasive approach and fast-track protocols.
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