Distal pancreatectomy: what is the standard for laparoscopic surgery?

Benjamin M. Stutchfield, Saju Joseph, Andrew D. Duckworth, O. James Garden, Rowan W. Parks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Background/aims:  Distal pancreatectomy (DP) is performed for a range of benign and malignant lesions. Accurate pre-operative diagnosis can be unreliable and morbidity remains high. This study evaluates a 12-year, single-centre experience with open DP to review indications, diagnoses and associated morbidity.

Methods:  Retrospective review of patients who underwent DP at a UK-based tertiary referral centre between 1994 and 2006.

Results:  Sixty-five patients (mean age 49.9 years) had final diagnoses of chronic pancreatitis ± pseudocyst (n= 22), benign cystadenoma (n= 15), neuroendocrine tumour (n= 8), primary pancreatic carcinoma (n= 6) and 14 other conditions. DP performed for presumed cystic neoplasm (n= 24) revealed a correct pre-operative diagnosis in 71% of patients. Histological examination confirmed that 59% of resected cystic tumours were either malignant or had malignant potential. When DP was undertaken for presumed pseudocyst (n= 12), 83% of cases were correctly diagnosed pre-operatively. Overall mortality and morbidity rates were 3% and 39%, respectively, with five patients (8%) developing a clinically significant pancreatic fistula. Ten (17%) patients developed diabetes mellitus and nine (14%) required long-term pancreatic exocrine supplementation.

Conclusions:  Open DP can be performed with acceptable morbidity, low mortality and preservation of pancreatic function in the majority of cases, setting the standard for laparoscopic techniques.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)210-214
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2009


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