Three-dimensional laparoscopy: is it as good as it looks?—a review of the literature
Technological advancement has benefited minimal invasive surgery substantially. In terms of enhanced operative vision, three-dimensional (3D) laparoscopy provides binocular depth perception, which was absent in the past with the conventional two-dimensional (2D) lap-aroscopy. There have been a number of studies comparing the use of 2D and 3D laparoscopy over the years and they were reviewed in this article. Essentially, 3D laparoscopy resulted in better performance time and lower error rates with specific tasks in experimental settings, and this was seen in surgeons across different levels of experience. The advantage in terms of operative and clinical outcome was equivocal, with some studies demonstrated faster op-erating time and less blood loss while others showing similar results. Long-term results in this aspect are scarce. Despite these, surgeons appeared to prefer 3D laparoscopy to the con-ventional 2D imaging system. Nevertheless, there are still questions to be answered and the role of 3D laparoscopy can be better defined with evidence from future studies.