Background: Duodenal stump insufficiency after surgery for penetrating gastroduodenal ulcer is associated with substantial mortality. "Classical" technique of closing a difficult duodenal stump (Nissen-Bsteh) has, up to now, not been compared with duodenojejunostomy (DJ) in larger patient sets. This also refers to the potential benefit of a gastric and biliary diversion under such conditions. The aim of the present study was to compare classical duodenal closure (CC) with DJ and to evaluate the impact of gastric and biliary diversion on postoperative outcome after surgery for penetrating, high-risk duodenal ulcer in a matched control study.
Methods: Out of 321 patients, treated for penetrating duodenal ulcer disease, the perioperative outcome of 62 DJ patients was compared with 62 patients undergoing CC matched for age, gender, biliary diversion, and the operating surgeon collective. A total of 70 patients, equally distributed between DJ and CC subsets, received temporary biliary diversion.
Results: Overall perioperative mortality was 10.5%. However, DJ significantly reduced the mortality rate (4.8%) associated with penetrating duodenal ulcer compared to CC (16.1%, P < 0.04). The overall morbidity in DJ patients nearly equalled that in the CC group (P = 0.4). Differences in the prevalence of duodenal leakage rate between DJ (14.5%) and CC (29%) patients were of borderline significance (P = 0.05). Temporary biliary diversion was identified as a prognostic factor for closure consistency with lower duodenal leakage rates in both DJ (odds ratio 0.05, 95% confidence interval 0.005-0.42) and CC patients (odds ratio 0.2, 95% confidence interval 0.05-0.6). In contrast, gastric diversion performed in a subset of 35 DJ patients had no protective effect.
Conclusion: Duodenojejunostomy combined with temporary biliary diversion substantially improves perioperative outcome in management of penetrating duodenal ulcer.