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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2000 June;55(6):421-30

language: Italian

Assessment of severity is an important tool in the treatment of acute biliary pancreatitis

Schietroma M., Lattanzio R., Risetti A., Rossi M., Carlei F., Cerimele M., Bellucci N., Pistoia M. A., Simi M.


Background. Acute biliary pancreatitis (ABP) still retains high morbidity (15-50%) and mortality (20-35%). Therefore it appears to be crucial to clearly assess the aetiological factors (50% of idiopathic are in fact biliary pancreatitis) and to establish their severity in order to plan the appropriate treatment.
Methods. 58 ABP patients were diagnosed by ultrasound (77.5%) or by laboratory findings (22.4%). Following Ranson and APACHE II scoring 17 cases (29.3%) were classified as severe, 41 (70.6%) as mild. All patients with severe ABP, had emergency ERCP + ES (within 24-48 hrs) followed by LC (£10 days). Patients with mild ABP had LC within 10 days; in these cases IOC was always done.
Results. In severe cases operative endoscopy cured pancreatic inflammation in 12 cases. Subsequent LC never showed serious morbidity, apart from subcutaneous emphysema in one case. In 5 cases laparotomy was required since pancreatic necrosis was present, with 60% mortality. In patients with mild pancreatitis LC was successfully performed in all cases, with 7.3% morbidity. IOC showed choledochal stones in 31.7% of cases, while in severe cases stones in the biliary tree were shown in 88.2% of cases.
Conclusions. In conclusion ABP treatment is always surgical, and almost always with minimally-invasive procedures in severe cases (ERCP+ES with LC £10 days) if surgery is performed within 24-48 hrs as well as in mild cases (LC+IOC) when surgery is done within 10 days.

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