Percutaneous drainage for treatment of infected pancreatic pseudocysts

South Med J. 2003 Feb;96(2):136-40. doi: 10.1097/01.SMJ.0000050682.65270.38.


Background: Infection of pancreatic pseudocysts is a potentially fatal complication that must be treated immediately. Despite numerous published reports about percutaneous treatment, the effectiveness of percutaneous catheter drainage (PCD) of infected pancreatic pseudocysts is still under discussion.

Methods: In this study, 30 patients (17 women) with 30 infected pancreatic pseudocysts were administered local anesthesia and underwent PCD performed with the use of a single-step trocar technique with computed tomographic guidance. The patients' ages varied from 27 to 74 years (mean age, 45 yr). The etiology was acute pancreatitis in 18 patients, chronic pancreatitis in 11 patients, and surgical trauma in 1 patient.

Results: No complications related to the procedure occurred in our series. The success rate was 96% (29 of 30 patients), with no recurrence during follow-up, which ranged from 2 to 58 months (mean follow-up, 27.2 mo). One patient had unsuccessful PCD and was subsequently treated surgically.

Conclusion: Our findings indicate that PCD is a safe and effective front-line treatment for patients with infected pancreatic pseudocysts.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Catheterization*
  • Drainage*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infections / diagnostic imaging
  • Infections / surgery*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Pancreatic Pseudocyst / diagnostic imaging
  • Pancreatic Pseudocyst / surgery*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Surgical Instruments
  • Time Factors
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed