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A Journal on Anesthesiology, Resuscitation, Analgesia and Intensive Care

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Anesthesiology, Analgesia, Resuscitation and Intensive Care
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Minerva Anestesiologica 1999 November;65(11):799-805

language: Italian

Acute necrotizing pancreatitis in ICU

Cominotti S. 1, Di Summa P. 1, Maraggia D. 1, Manieri P. 2, Chiaranda M. 3

1 Ospedale di Circolo - Varese, Unità Operativa Servizio «B» di Anestesia e Rianimazione;
2 Ospedale di Circolo - Varese, Unità Operativa Servizio di Cardiochirurgia;
3 Università degli Studi dell’Insubria - Varese, Scuola di Specializzazione in Anestesia e Rianimazione


Background. Infected necrotizing pancreatitis is the most fulminant variety of this disease. The reported mortality is up to 50%. The haemodynamic features of cardiovascular instability has many similarities to sepsis syndrome, septic shock and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS). The purpose of this study is to review personal experience in the ICU (hospital of Varese) to determine etiology, treatment and complications.
Methods. Twenty patients treated since 1988 with infected necrotizing pancreatitis required surgical treatment and mechanical ventilation.
Results. The mortality rate was 60% and ICU-stay was 26.5±12.3 days, the median age was 54±13. Ranson’s criteria at admission to the ICU was 6.6±1.2, Glasgow point was 4.6±1.2 (5.5±0.87 died, 3.2±0.8 survived p<0.01), Baltazar score 6.2±2.1 (7.4±2.1 died, 5.5±0.9 survived p<0.05) and SAPS II score 43.4±12.1 (50.1±7.8 died, 34±5.5 survived p<0.01). The etiology was: gallstones (45%), alcoholism (15%), ERCP (15%) and idiopathic in 25%. Serum pancreatic amylase was 342±113.9 U/l (550±100 died, 155±60 survived p<0.01), lipase was 334±176 U/l and transaminases GOT was 123±46 u/l (156±90 died, 29±7 survived p<0.05). High initial amylase and GOT levels were frequently found in non survived patients. MODS occurred in 17 cases (85%), ARDS in 2 patients (10%), abdominal bleeding in 6 (30%) and septic syndrome in 8 (40%).
Conclusions. It is thus possible that a target-oriented approach including fluid replacement, rapid correction of intestinal underperfusion, inotropic and antibiotic therapy, supply of specific nutrients and other therapeutic strategies as open laparostomy must be employed to prevent MODS or septic syndrome in pancreatic infection after acute necrotizing pancreatitis.

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