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Laparoscopic lateral pancreaticojejunostomy: our experience of 17 cases.

BACKGROUND: Although lateral pancreaticojejunostomy (LPJ) is one of the most commonly performed procedures for the management of chronic obstructive pancreatitis, it is seldom performed laparoscopically. We report our experience of 17 consecutive laparoscopic LPJ (lap LPJ) and their outcome.

METHODS: Seventeen patients (nine male and eight female) with ages ranging between 16 and 48 years underwent lap LPJ by a single surgical team. The most common presenting symptoms were abdominal pain and weight loss.

RESULTS: The mean operating times for lap LPJ and lap LPJ with one or more additional procedures were 277 min and 377 min, respectively. The mean hospital stay was 5.2 days. Conversion to laparotomy was required in four patients. There were no deaths and the overall complication rate was 11.8%. On follow-up, ranging from 3 months to 1 year, 82.3% of the patients were pain-free.

CONCLUSIONS: Lateral pancreaticojejunostomy is the surgical procedure of choice for the management of chronic obstructive pancreatitis. The same procedure can be performed laparoscopically; although it is technically demanding, the results are excellent. However, the procedure is still in the early phase of feasibility owing to the limited number of cases reported in the world literature.

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