A 20-year experience with 112 patients with cholangiocarcinoma was reviewed with reference to the demographic, etiologic, and clinical features and prognosis in the following two types: peripheral (originating from the intrahepatic small duct radicles) and hilar (originating from the major hepatic ducts at or near the junction of the right and left hepatic ducts). Seventy of the 112 patients were in the hilar group, and 42 were in the peripheral group. Prolonged high alcohol consumption was a prominent feature in both categories (45% and 37%, respectively). Among the women, 35% of those with the peripheral tumor had used oral contraceptive preparations. The major identifiable etiologic factor among the hilar tumors was ulcerative colitis, with or without sclerosing cholangitis, which was documented in 20 of 70 cases (28.6%), with an additional 4 patients having Crohn's disease. The hilar group mainly had obstructive jaundice initially, whereas abdominal pain and weight loss were the predominant symptoms in the peripheral type. Tumor recurrence was frequent in those undergoing resection or transplantation, and none of those undergoing chemotherapy or radiation therapy showed any objective evidence of response. Overall median survival time was poor in both groups at 12 months.