Single-stage definitive laparoscopic management in mild acute biliary pancreatitis

A Isla, J Griniatsos, A Rodway
Journal of Laparoendoscopic & Advanced Surgical Techniques. Part A 2003, 13 (2): 77-81

BACKGROUND: Population-based studies have shown that nearly one third of patients with acute biliary pancreatitis undergo endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) before undergoing laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC) (two-stage approach). The present study was designed to evaluate the safety of single-stage laparoscopic management to avoid preoperative ERCP.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Between June 1998 and June 2002, 35 female patients and 10 male patients (median age, 59 years) with uncomplicated mild acute biliary pancreatitis were studied prospectively and reviewed retrospectively. LC with fluoroscopic intraoperative cholangiography (IOC) or with fluoroscopic IOC and laparoscopic CBD exploration in cases of concomitant choledocholithiasis was performed as the definitive treatment (single-stage approach). Patients underwent surgery electively when symptoms had subsided and laboratory parameters had improved.

RESULTS: LC alone was performed in 39 patients, and an additional laparoscopic CBD exploration was performed in the remaining six. In one patient, IOC yielded a false-positive result. CBD stones were detected in four cases, and debris in the CBD in one case, for an 11% incidence of concomitant choledocholithiasis. The conversion rate was zero, and single-stage laparoscopic treatment was successful in all cases. The overall morbidity rate was 4%. The 30-day postoperative mortality rate was zero.

CONCLUSION: Although preoperative ERCP and sphincterotomy still have a role in complicated cases of mild acute biliary pancreatitis, laparoscopic single-stage definitive treatment is feasible and safe in uncomplicated cases of disease when local experience is available.


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