The continuum of complications in survivors of necrotizing pancreatitis

Thomas K. Maatman, Alexandra M. Roch, Eugene P. Ceppa, Jeffrey J. Easler, Mark A. Gromski, Michael G. House, Attila Nakeeb, C. Schmidt, Stuart Sherman, Nicholas Zyromski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: Necrotizing pancreatitis survivors develop complications beyond infected necrosis that often require invasive intervention. Remarkably few data have cataloged these late complications after acute necrotizing pancreatitis resolution. We sought to identify the types and incidence of complications after necrotizing pancreatitis. Design: An observational study was performed evaluating 647 patients with necrotizing pancreatitis captured in a single-institution database between 2005 and 2017 at a tertiary care hospital. Retrospective review and analysis of newly diagnosed conditions attributable to necrotizing pancreatitis was performed. Exclusion criteria included the following: death before disease resolution (n = 57, 9%) and patients lost to follow-up (n = 12, 2%). Results: A total of 578 patients were followed for a median of 46 months (range, 8 months to 15 y) after necrotizing pancreatitis. In 489 (85%) patients 1 or more complications developed and included symptomatic disconnected pancreatic duct syndrome (285 of 578, 49%), splanchnic vein thrombosis (257 of 572, 45%), new endocrine insufficiency (195 of 549, 35%), new exocrine insufficiency (108 of 571, 19%), symptomatic chronic pancreatitis (93 of 571, 16%), incisional hernia (89 of 420, 21%), biliary stricture (90 of 576, 16%), chronic pain (44 of 575, 8%), gastrointestinal fistula (44 of 578, 8%), pancreatic duct stricture (30 of 578, 5%), and duodenal stricture (28 of 578, 5%). During the follow-up period, a total of 340 (59%) patients required an invasive intervention after necrotizing pancreatitis resolution. Invasive pancreatobiliary intervention was required in 230 (40%) patients. Conclusion: Late complications are common in necrotizing pancreatitis survivors. A broad variety of problems manifest themselves after resolution of the acute disease process and often require invasive intervention. Necrotizing pancreatitis patients should be followed lifelong by experienced clinicians.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalSurgery (United States)
StateAccepted/In press - 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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