Research Article

Laparoscopic diagnosis of ascites in Lesotho.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985; 291 doi: (Published 17 August 1985) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1985;291:473
  1. R I Menzies,
  2. J M Fitzgerald,
  3. K Mulpeter


    In a prospective study of 98 consecutive patients with undiagnosed ascites examined by laparoscopy a correct immediate diagnosis was made in 76 (78%) and a final diagnosis in 92 (94%) of those who underwent laparoscopy. Visual diagnosis was highly accurate in patients with tuberculous peritonitis but only moderately accurate in those with carcinomatosis and liver disease. When the laparoscopic findings were compared with histological and microbiological results visual diagnosis was found to be the most accurate diagnostic method. Laparoscopy may readily be used in rural hospitals for diagnosing ascites.