Open versus minimally invasive small bowel resection for Crohn's disease: a NSQIP retrospective review and analysis

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Surgical endoscopy








Crohn’s disease; Minimally invasive surgery; Small bowel


INTRODUCTION: Many patients with Crohn's Disease will require surgical resection. While many studies have described outcomes following ileocecectomy, few have evaluated surgical resection of other portions of small bowel. We sought to compare open and minimally invasive surgery (MIS) approaches for small bowel resection excluding ileocecectomy of patients with Crohn's Disease using the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP) database. METHODS: The NSQIP database was queried for patients with Crohn's disease or complications related to Crohn's disease who underwent segmental small bowel resection utilizing open or minimally invasive approaches between 2012 and 2018. Patients requiring ileocecectomy or diagnosed with ascites, disseminated cancer, pre-operative sepsis, ASA class 5, and patients requiring mechanical ventilation were excluded. The association of pre-operative variables including patient demographic information and comorbidities with surgical approach were examined using Fishers exact test. Intraoperative, and 30-day post-operative outcomes were compared between the groups using both univariate and multivariate logistical regression models. SAS was used for data analysis with p < 0.05 considered significant. RESULTS: After exclusions, we found 1697 patients with Crohn's disease who underwent segmental small bowel resection, 1252 of whom underwent open surgery and 445 of whom underwent MIS. After adjusting for possible confounders with multivariable analysis, patients who underwent MIS had a lower incidence of wound events (surgical site, organ space, or deep wound infection, or dehiscence), post-operative bleeding, need for return to the operating room, and shorter total hospital length of stay despite longer operative times compared with open surgery. CONCLUSIONS: This retrospective review of NSQIP shows that minimally invasive small bowel resection is associated with equivalent or improved morbidity over open surgery in select patients with small bowel Crohn's Disease. We show that in select patients minimally invasive small bowel resection can be safe and performed for patients with isolated small bowel Crohn's disease.