Endoscopic sphincterotomy in acute gallstone pancreatitis: a prospective study of the late outcome

H Gislason, M Vetrhus, A Horn, D Hoem, K Söndenaa, O Søreide, A Viste, A Andrén-Sandberg
European Journal of Surgery, Acta Chirurgica 2001, 167 (3): 204-8

OBJECTIVE: To describe the outcome after acute biliary pancreatitis in patients treated during the acute attack by endoscopic sphincterotomy without cholecystectomy.

DESIGN: Prospective observational study.

SETTING: University hospital, Norway.

SUBJECTS: 130 patients with gallstones and acute pancreatitis. In 62 patients with common bile duct stones the bile duct was cleared by sphincterotomy and stone extraction. The remaining 68 patients had prophylactic sphincterotomy. Cholecystectomy was not planned later.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Incidence of recurrent acute pancreatitis and need for cholecystectomy.

RESULTS: 21 patients were dead or not available for the follow-up. Consequently 109 patients were followed-up for a median of 39 months (range 23-62). One patient had recurrent pancreatitis. 20 patients had a cholecystectomy later for symptoms related to gallstone disease. Of the rest, 25 patients had moderate or mild gallstone-related symptoms. There was no difference in gallstone-related symptoms between those who had had stones in the bile duct and those who had not. 63 patients had no symptoms related to gallstones.

CONCLUSION: Endoscopic sphincterotomy during or immediately after acute gallstone pancreatitis resulted in half the patients being free of symptoms during the next three years.


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