Effect of aging on the pancreatic ducts: a study based on endoscopic retrograde pancreatography

Gastrointest Endosc. May-Jun 1989;35(3):210-3. doi: 10.1016/s0016-5107(89)72760-7.


Studies in the West have shown that with advancing age there is progressive atrophy and fibrosis of the pancreas. In addition, there is a gradual increase in diameter of the main pancreatic duct (MPD) with age. However, there is a discrepancy between the findings at autopsy and findings at endoscopic retrograde pancreatography (ERP). To examine this issue, ERP of subjects who were found not to show any abnormality of the biliary and pancreatic ducts were selected. They were divided by decade from 10 to 70 years and for statistical analysis into young (less than 40) and older (greater than or equal to 40) patients. There was no difference in length of the MPD between the two groups. However, the width of the MPD in the head was significantly greater in the older subjects (group 2; mean +/- SD = 3.78 +/- 0.97 mm) compared with those who were less than 40 years (group 1; 2.97 +/- 0.71 mm; p less than 0.001). Similarly, in the midbody the width of the MPD in group 2 (2.86 +/- 0.9 mm) was significantly greater compared with group 1 (2.36 +/- 0.51 mm; p less than 0.02). However, there was no difference in width of the MPD in the tail between the two groups. Length of the accessory pancreatic duct (APD) did not show any alteration with age but width was significantly greater in group 2 (1.94 +/- 0.69) compared with group 1 (1.49 +/- 0.51; p less than 0.05). No difference was observed in the length and width of the MPD or APD between male and female subjects of either group.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aging / pathology*
  • Cholangiopancreatography, Endoscopic Retrograde*
  • Dilatation, Pathologic / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • India
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pancreatic Ducts / diagnostic imaging
  • Pancreatic Ducts / pathology*
  • Reference Values