A modified technique of the Beger and Frey procedure in patients with chronic pancreatitis

Dig Surg. 2001;18(1):21-5. doi: 10.1159/000050092.


Background: Resection of the pancreas requires control of tributaries of the superior mesenteric vein (SMV) inferior to the head of the pancreas as well as separation of the posterior surface of the pancreas from the SMV and from eventually existing collateral veins. This usually is the most tedious part when performing a resection of the pancreatic head, in particular if there are signs of portal hypertension. Portal vein pathology contributes to intra- and postoperative morbidity in pancreatic surgery.

Operative technique: Instead of dissecting the pancreas along the anterior surface of the SMV our proposed technique allows resection of the head of the pancreas without division of the gland. This approach combines elements of Beger's duodenum-preserving pancreatic head resection and of Frey's limited local pancreatic head excision combined with a longitudinal pancreaticojejunostomy. This modified technique avoids the risk of a bleeding complication which is increased in the presence of portal hypertension and dilation.

Summary: The advantages of this modified technique over standard Beger and Frey procedures are: (1) the minimized risk of a bleeding complication in case of portal hypertension because pancreatic transsection does not need to be done, and (2) the considerably more radical excision as compared to local excision. Also, it represents the most minimal surgical trauma for resecting the head of the pancreas as compared to other commonly used techniques.

MeSH terms

  • Anastomosis, Surgical / methods
  • Chronic Disease
  • Humans
  • Minimally Invasive Surgical Procedures / methods
  • Pancreatectomy / methods*
  • Pancreaticojejunostomy / methods
  • Pancreatitis / diagnosis
  • Pancreatitis / surgery*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity