Purpose: To perform a decision analysis that compared the life expectancy and quality-adjusted life expectancy of early-stage, favorable- prognosis Hodgkin's disease (HD) managed with and without staging laparotomy, incorporating data on treatment outcomes of HD in the modern era. Methods: We constructed a decision-analytic model to compare laparotomy versus no laparotomy staging for a hypothetical cohort of 25-year-old patients with clinical stages I and II, favorable-prognosis HD. Markov models were used to simulate the lifetime clinical course of patients, whose prognosis depended on the true pathologic stage and initial treatment. The baseline probability estimates used in the model were derived from results of published studies. Quality-of-life adjustments for procedures and treatments, as well as the various long-term health states, were incorporated. Results: The life expectancy was 36.67 years for the laparotomy strategy and 35.92 years for no laparotomy, yielding a net expected benefit of 0.75 years for laparotomy staging. The corresponding quality-adjusted life expectancies for the two strategies were 35.97 and 35.38 quality-adjusted life years (QALYs), respectively, resulting in a net expected benefit of laparotomy staging of 0.59 QALYs. Sensitivity analysis showed that the decision of laparotomy versus no laparotomy was most heavily influenced by the quality-of-life weight assigned to the postlaparotomy state. Conclusion: Our model predicted that on average, far a 25-year-old patient, proceeding with staging laparotomy resulted in a gain in life expectancy of 9 months, or 7 quality- adjusted months. These results suggest that a role remains for surgical staging in the management of early-stage HD.