In 328 cases of hydatid disease of the liver operated between 1979 and 1989, 51 (15.8 %) had complicated cysts. The most frequent complication was intrabiliary rupture (2/3 of all complications). The others were intraperitoneal rupture in 7 cases (13.8 %), suppuration in 7 cases (13.8 %) and intrathoracic rupture in 3 cases (5.8 %). Among the intrabiliary ruptured cysts, T-drainage was performed in 15 cases, choledochoduodenostomy was performed in 12 cases, and sphincteroplasty was performed in 7 cases. The cases of intraabdominal rupture were operated immediately. The suppurated cysts were marsupialized in 3 cases and drained in 4 cases. The 3 cases of bronchobiliary fistula were treated by T-tube drainage of the common bile duct, drainage of the pleural space, repair of the diaphragm and closure of the communicating bronchus. In this series, the mortality rate was 7.8 % and the reccurrence rate was 9.8 %.