Conjugated Hyperbilirubinemia in Infants: Is There Still a Role for ERCP?

Can J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2021 Jun 24:2021:9969825. doi: 10.1155/2021/9969825. eCollection 2021.


Over a twenty-year period, we performed 255 ERCP procedures in infants aged up to 1 year. ERCP was indicated in cholestatic infants with suspicion of biliary obstruction. The most common diagnosis was biliary atresia (48%), choledochal cysts (13%), and choledocholithiasis (4%). The procedure complication rate was 13.7%. Hyperamylasemia occurred in 12.9%. More severe complications were rare-0.8% of ERCP procedure. There were no cases of postprocedural pancreatitis or death. Our study has proved that ERCP is a safe and reliable method in this age group. Its high specificity and negative predictive value for extrahepatic biliary atresia can prevent unnecessary surgeries in patients with normal bile ducts or endoscopically treatable pathologies.

MeSH terms

  • Cholangiopancreatography, Endoscopic Retrograde / adverse effects
  • Choledocholithiasis* / diagnostic imaging
  • Choledocholithiasis* / surgery
  • Cholestasis* / etiology
  • Humans
  • Hyperbilirubinemia
  • Infant
  • Pancreatitis*