Middle pancreatectomy: indications, short- and long-term operative outcomes

Ann Surg. 2007 Jul;246(1):69-76. doi: 10.1097/01.sla.0000262790.51512.57.


Objective: To evaluate the indications, perioperative, and long-term outcomes of a large cohort of patients who underwent middle pancreatectomy (MP).

Summary background data: MP is a parenchyma-sparing technique aimed to reduce the risk of postoperative exocrine and endocrine insufficiency. Reported outcomes after MP are conflicting.

Methods: : Patients who underwent MP between 1990 and 2005 at the Massachusetts General Hospital and at the University of Verona were identified. The outcomes after MP were compared with a control group that underwent extended left pancreatectomy (ELP) for neoplasms in the mid pancreas.

Results: A total of 100 patients underwent MP. The most common indications were neuroendocrine neoplasms, serous cystadenoma, and branch-duct IPMNs. Comparison with 45 ELP showed that intraoperative blood loss and transfusions were significantly higher for ELP. The 2 groups showed no differences in overall morbidity, abdominal complications, overall pancreatic fistula, and grade B/C pancreatic fistula rate (17% in MP and 13% in ELP), but the mean hospital-stay was longer for MP patients (P = 0.005). Mortality was zero. In the MP group, 5 patients affected by IPMNs had positive resection margins and 3 had recurrence. After a median follow-up of 54 months, incidence of new endocrine and exocrine insufficiency were significantly higher in the ELP group (4% vs. 38%, P = 0.0001 and 5% vs. 15.6%, P = 0.039, respectively).

Conclusions: MP is a safe and effective procedure for treatment of benign and low-grade malignant neoplasms of the mid pancreas and is associated with a low risk of development of exocrine and endocrine insufficiency. MP should be avoided in patients affected by main-duct IPMN.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Length of Stay
  • Male
  • Massachusetts / epidemiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / epidemiology
  • Pancreatectomy / methods*
  • Pancreatectomy / mortality
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Survival Rate
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome