Background & aims: The treatment of patients with extensive pancreatic necrosis remains controversial; a subpopulation of patients with extensive acute pancreatic necrosis develop complex, organized collections. This study examined the feasibility of endoscopic drainage in patients with extensive organized pancreatic necrosis.
Methods: Eleven patients with organized pancreatic necrosis (8 sterile and 3 infected) after severe acute necrotizing pancreatitis underwent attempted endoscopic drainage. Dynamic contrast-enhanced computerized tomography showed > or = 50% pancreatic necrosis in 10 of 11 patients in whom endoscopic drainage was performed. In 8 patients, an intrapancreatic nasobiliary lavage catheter was placed into the collection concurrently with 10F stents.
Results: Complete resolution was achieved nonoperatively in 9 patients. At a mean follow-up of 12 months, 1 patient developed a pseudocyst, which was successfully drained endoscopically. Complications occurred in 5, including bleeding that precluded entry into one collection.
Conclusions: Endoscopic therapy may be a viable management option for a subset of patients who remain symptomatic after an episode of acute pancreatic necrosis after the necrosis has become organized and partially liquefied. Intrapancreatic lavage catheter placement is essential to the success of this procedure. Further evaluation of this technique is needed before this method can be adopted into clinical practice.