Transient Biliary Fistula After Pancreatoduodenectomy Increases Risk of Biliary Anastomotic Stricture

Thomas K. Maatman, Alexa J. Loncharich, Katelyn F. Flick, Rachel E. Simpson, Eugene P. Ceppa, Attila Nakeeb, Trang K. Nguyen, C. Max Schmidt, Nicholas J. Zyromski, Michael G. House

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: Biliary fistula after pancreatoduodenectomy (PD) is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. The aim of this study was to determine the risk of early postoperative biliary fistula for developing biliary anastomotic stricture after PD. Methods: Retrospective review of all PD performed for various indications at a single institution between 2013 and 2018. Postoperative biliary fistulae were graded according to the International Study Group of Liver Surgery (ISGLS) as grade A–C. Multivariable analysis was performed for all comparative patient subgroups. Results: A total of 843 patients underwent PD for malignant (68%) and benign (32%) indications. Postoperative biliary fistula developed in 66 (8%) patients; ISGLS grade A in 29 (3%), grade B in 32 (4%), and grade C in 5 (0.6%). Ninety-day mortality was 3% (25 patients). The remaining 818 patients were evaluated with a median follow-up of 16 months (IQR, 5–32 months). Biliary anastomotic stricture developed in 41 (5%) patients at a median of 10 months (IQR, 6–18 months) postoperatively. Strictures were managed with percutaneous (27 patients, 66%) or endoscopic (14 patients, 34%) stenting. No biliary stricture required operative anastomotic revision. Postoperative biliary fistula (HR, 4.4; 95% CI, 2.0–9.9; P = 0.0002) was associated with biliary anastomotic stricture; an increased risk for biliary anastomotic stricture was seen in patients with grade A (HR, 6.4; 95% CI, 2.4–16.9; P = 0.0002) and grade B (HR, 3.6; 95% CI, 1.2–10.9; P = 0.02) postoperative biliary fistula. Conclusion: Postoperative biliary fistula after pancreatoduodenectomy, including clinically insignificant, transient biliary fistula, is associated with an increased risk of a late biliary anastomotic stricture requiring stenting.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Gastrointestinal Surgery
StateAccepted/In press - 2020


  • Anastomosis, surgical
  • Anastomotic leak
  • Biliary tract surgical procedures
  • Choledochostomy
  • Pancreaticoduodenectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Gastroenterology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Transient Biliary Fistula After Pancreatoduodenectomy Increases Risk of Biliary Anastomotic Stricture'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this