Cholangitis prevention in endoscopic Klatskin tumor palliation: air cholangiography technique.

Giuseppe Modica, Carmelo Sciume', Girolamo Geraci, Girolamo Geraci, Girolamo Geraci, Franco Pisello

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16 Citations (Scopus)


INTRODUCTION: Endoscopic biliary drainage is the treatment of choice for inoperable hilar cholangiocarcinoma (so-called Klatskin tumor). Cholangitis is the main complication post-endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) in Klatskin patients, specially when medium contrast is injected into biliary tree that could not be subsequently drained. Bacterial cholangitis is the principal cause of mortality in these patients. The aim of this study is to analyze cholangitis rate resulting from the use of air versus iodine contrast to obtain cholangiography during ERCP.METHODS: In 9 years, 188 inoperable Klatskin patients were recruited and divided into two groups: iodine (A) or air (B) contrast cholangiography, respectively. We used air or iodine contrast to obtain cholangiography before hilar stricture stenting. We retrospectively compared these data in both groups.RESULTS: The group B had a significant lower rate of cholangitis than group A in Bismuth type II (p < 0.05), in Bismuth type III (p < 0.05), and in the Bismuth type IV population (p < 0.05).CONCLUSION: The air contrast cholangiography is a safe and effective method, and it appears justified as a routine procedure to prevent or reduce the risk of post-ERCP cholangitis, specially in Klatskin patients (p < 0.005).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1109-1114
Number of pages6
JournalLangenbeck's Archives of Surgery
Publication statusPublished - 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery


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