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Rivista di Medicina Interna
Indexed/Abstracted in: BIOSIS Previews, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
Impact Factor 1,6
Panminerva Medica 1999 September;41(3):243-6
Predictive factors for cholelithiasis complications
Tritapepe R., Piro D., Annoni F., Segala M.*
From the Chair of Surgical Gastroenterology University of Milan School of Medicine
* Institute of Emergency Surgery, University of Milan, Italy
Background. Cholelithiasis is a benign disease that is very frequently encountered throughout the world. Its surgical mortality is usually minimal (0.1%), but the risk is considerably greater (2-10%) in patients developing complications particularly if they are elderly. The identification of possible predictive signs of complications is therefore crucial for the indication of preventive surgery.
Methods. The present study retrospectively examined 490 patients admitted to hospital because of complicated and uncomplicated cholelithiasis in order to establish the existence of previous (clinical or instrumental) symptoms that may be predictive of the course of the disease. The analysis of some variables (age, sex, pregnancy, diet, ethanol consumption, smoking, previous/concomitant diseases, and blood chemistry and instrumental test results) and the specific symptoms of cholelithiasis made it possible to identify two potential risk factors: an age of more than 60 years and the onset of biliary colic.
Results. The risk of developing complications is 3.2 times greater in patients aged more than 60 years than in those who are younger, and 3.3 times greater in symptomatic than in asymptomatic patients. Statistical analysis also revealed that the risk of complicatons is about ten times greater in patients with both risk factors than in those with neither.
Conclusions. In conclusion, the indication for surgery must be considered absolute in symptomatic patients aged more than 60 years and relative to younger symptomatic patients.