BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Laparoscopic cholecystectomy has caused a monumental change in general surgery by affecting a trend toward minimally invasive surgical procedures and has become the standard treatment for benign gallbladder disease. The aim of this study is to review the results of one thousand consecutive patients who underwent laparoscopic cholecystectomy. METHODS: A retrospective analysis of 1,000 laparoscopic cholecystectomies was performed at Inje University Pusan Paik Hospital from April 1992 to June 1997. RESULTS: There were 403 males and 597 females, with ages ranging from 14 to 85 years. One hundred thirty nine patients had a clinical history of previous abdominal operations and 18 patients were associated with liver cirrhosis. Preoperatively, 168 patients underwent endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography and 60 patients were found to have unsuspected common bile duct stones. The success rate of endoscopic sphincterotoy in patients with cotnmon bile duct stones was 91.6%. Postoperative diagnosis was chonic cholecystitis with stone in 824 patients, acute cholecystitis with stone in 110 patients, acalculous cholecystitis in 15 patients, benign tumor in 37 patients, and gallbladder carcinoma in 13 patients. We converted to open laparotomy in fifty three patients (5.3%) for a variety of reasons. In patients with nonvisualized gallbladder on oral cholecystogram, the rate of conversion was significantly high. Operative complications occurred in 16 patients (1.6%). There was no operative mortality. Average duration of postoperative hospitalization was 2.5 days. CONCLUSIONS: Laparoscopic cholecystectomy is a safe and effective treatment modality for benign gallbladder disease.