Benign biliary strictures: a current comprehensive clinical and imaging review

AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2011 Aug;197(2):W295-306. doi: 10.2214/AJR.10.6002.


Objective: There is a wide spectrum of nonneoplastic causes of biliary stricture that can pose a significant challenge to clinicians and radiologists. Imaging plays a key role in differentiating benign from malignant strictures, defining the extent, and directing the biopsy. We describe the salient clinical and imaging manifestations of benign biliary strictures that will help radiologists to accurately diagnose these entities.

Conclusion: Accurate diagnosis and management are based on correlating imaging findings with epidemiologic, clinical, and laboratory data. Cross-sectional imaging modalities permit precise localization of the site and length of the segment involved, thereby serving as a road map to surgery, and permit exclusion of underlying malignancy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects
  • Biliary Tract Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Biliary Tract Diseases / etiology
  • Constriction, Pathologic
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Diagnostic Imaging*
  • HIV Infections / complications
  • Humans
  • Iatrogenic Disease
  • Pancreatitis / complications
  • Risk Factors


  • Antineoplastic Agents