Does intraoperative electrohydraulic lithotripsy improve outcome in the surgical management of chronic pancreatitis?
Lateral pancreaticojejunostomy (LPJ) is the cornerstone of surgical management of pain associated with chronic pancreatitis (CP) and ductal dilation. The pathologic key to failure of LPJ is disease confined to the head of the pancreas. Intraoperative pancreatoscopy with electrohydraulic lithotripsy (EHL) is a novel technique that avoids resection and eradicates intraductal lithiasis in the head of the gland. This study was undertaken to compare outcome of LPJ alone and LPJ with intraoperative EHL in the surgical management of CP. The records of patients undergoing LPJ with intraoperative EHL between 1996 and 1998 (Group A) were reviewed and compared with our historical data of patients who underwent LPJ alone from 1977 through 1991 (Group B). Quality-of-life questionnaires were administered in person or by telephone. Fisher’s exact and Mann-Whitney statistical tests were used where appropriate. Twenty patients (12 men, 8 women; mean age 51 years, range 29-68) in Group A underwent LPH w