Background and study aims: Pancreatic pseudocysts are a complication in up to 20% of patients with pancreatitis. Endoscopic management of pseudocysts by a conventional transenteric technique, i. e. conventional transmural drainage (CTD), or by endoscopic ultrasound-guided drainage (EUD), is well described. Our aim was to prospectively compare the short-term and long-term results of CTD and EUD in the management of pseudocysts.
Patients and methods: A total of 99 consecutive patients underwent endoscopic management of pancreatic pseudocysts according to this predetermined treatment algorithm: patients with bulging lesions without obvious portal hypertension underwent CTD; all remaining patients underwent EUD. Patients were followed prospectively, with cross-sectional imaging during clinic visits. We compared short-term and long-term results (effectiveness and complications) at 1 and 6 months post procedure.
Results: 46 patients (37 men) underwent EUD and 53 patients (39 men) had CTD. The mean age of the entire group was 50 +/- 13 years. There were no significant differences between the two groups regarding short-term success (93% vs. 94%) or long-term success (84% vs. 91%); 68 of the 99 patients completed 6 months of follow-up. Complications occurred in 19% of EUD vs. 18% of CTD patients, and consisted of bleeding in three, infection of the collection in eight, stent migration into the pseudocyst in three, and pneumoperitoneum in five. All complications but one could be managed conservatively.
Conclusions: No clear differences in efficacy or safety were observed between conventional and EUS-guided cystenterostomy. The choice of technique is likely best predicated by individual patient presentation and local expertise.