This 1st European Guidelines Meeting on Laparoscopic Liver Surgery took place on the 10th – 11th February 2017 at the Hilton at Ageas Bowl, Southampton. The meeting was endorsed by the EAHPBA (European-African Hepato Pancreato Biliary Association) and attracted over 200 UK and international experts in open and Laparoscopic Liver Surgery to develop future Guidelines for the safe and continuous expansion of Laparoscopic Liver Surgery in Europe and worldwide.
Topics covered included: indications for surgery, patient selection, surgical techniques, complex clinical scenarios, training and future implementation were discussed. During the meeting delegates were exposed to state of the art lectures and videos on surgical techniques as well as a number of “Meet the Professor” sessions.
The meeting heard that liver keyhole surgery is less painful for the patient; more cost effective; allows quicker recovery and is expanding in use. However, there are no recognised guidelines for its use. Draft guidelines have now been developed in association with the International Laparoscopic Liver Society (ILLS), European-African Hepato Pancreato Biliary Association (EAHPBA), the Italian Group of Minimally Invasive Liver Surgery (I Go MILS), Association of upper Gastrointestinal Surgeons of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (AUGIS) & the Great Britain and Ireland Hepato Pancreato Biliary Association (GBIHPBA).
For the guidelines to be acceptable it is important that the methodology used to create them must be credible; validated and defendable. They have been developed by a research working group (pictured) and then considered by 23 experts across Europe. The guidelines were validated by a Validation Committee, chaired by Dr. Horacio J. Asbun, Professor of Surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Florida, USA and was supported by the LAPR&D charity who represented patient interests. The charity funds research that detects the early signs of these forms of cancer and enhances mini-invasive treatment, such as keyhole surgery, and after care methods – as such to Congress and the Charity share similar objectives. The draft guidelines cover 4 topic areas: Indication; Patients and Complex Disease; Procedures; Technique and Implementation. Feedback from the Validation Committee on the draft guidelines was provided to the Congress and will now be considered by the Working and Steering Grus before being adopted across Europe.
Mo Abu Hilal said “tremendous progress has been made during the Congress in Southampton on the development of these important guidelines. I would like to pay credit to all who have worked so hard to get us to this point including the Working Group, all subject matter experts and the Validation committee. We will now finalise the guidelines which will bring benefits to patients. I hope that over time they will attain worldwide acceptance” .