Patient Selection for Total Pancreatectomy with Islet Autotransplantation in the Surgical Management of Chronic Pancreatitis

Morgan KA, Lancaster WP, Owczarski SM, et al. Patient Selection for Total Pancreatectomy with Islet Autotransplantation in the Surgical Management of Chronic Pancreatitis. J Am Coll Surg. 2018 Apr;226(4):446-451.

Full-text for Emory users.

Results: One hundred and ninety-five patients (141 women, aged 40.3 years, BMI 26.5 kg/m2) underwent TPIAT. Mean duration of disease before operation was 8.1 years. Fifty-six (29%) patients had pancreatic operations before TPIAT, 37 (19%) patients were diabetic preoperatively, and 52 (27%) patients were smokers. A mean of 3,253 islet equivalents transplanted/kg were harvested. Insulin independence was achieved in 29%, 28%, and 23% of patients at 1, 2, and 5 years postoperative. Nonsmokers with a shorter duration of chronic pancreatitis and no earlier pancreas operation were more likely to be insulin free. Median number of preoperative emergency department visits and hospitalizations were 6.6 and 4.3 annually, respectively, compared with 0 at 1, 2, and 5 years postoperative. Median oral morphine equivalents were 214 mg/kg preoperation and 60, 64, 69, at 1, 2, 5 years postoperative. Preoperative, 1, 2, 5 years postoperative QOL scores were 29, 36, 34, and 33 (physical; p < 0.01) and 39, 44, 42, and 42 (mental health; p < 0.02). Genetic pancreatitis patients were more often narcotic free and had better QOL than patients with pancreatitis of other causes. At 5 years, overall survival was 92.3%.

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AAA repair: retroperitoneal vs transperitoneal approach

One discussion this week included transperitoneal vs retroperitoneal  approach following AAA repair.

Reference: Buck DB, et al. Transperitoneal vs retroperitoneal approach for open abdominal aortic aneurysm repair in the targeted vascular NSQIP. Journal of Vascular Surgery. 2016 Sept;64(3):585-591. doi:10/1016/j.jvs.2016.01.055.

Summary: This study aims to identify the demographic and anatomical differences between patients currently selected for elective transperitoneal versus retroperitoneal AAA repair and to assess differences in intra-operative details, and perioperative mortality and complications.

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Small bowel obstruction: clinical and radiographic predictors for surgical intervention

One discussion this week included the clinical and radiographic signs for operation or nonoperation in the setting of adhesive small bowel obstruction (ASBO).

Reference: Kulvatunyou N, et al. A multi-institution prospective observational study of small bowel obstruction: Clinical and computerized tomography predictors of which patients may require early surgery. The Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. 2015. 79(3);393-398. doi:10.1079/TA.0000000000000759.

Summary: The absence of flatus and the CT finding of free fluid and high-grade obstruction have been identified by Kulvatunyou et al (2015) as predictors that early operative intervention would be beneficial. This prospective observational study involved 200 patients at three academic and tertiary referral medical centers; 148 in the nonoperative group, 52 in the operative group.

Clinical signs: The only clinical sign identified as a predictor for surgical intervention, “no flatus” was listed in 58% of the operative group, 34% of the nonoperative group. Too large to include here, Table 3 in the text (p.397) lists the univariate analysis of all clinical signs.

CT findings: Individual CT signs listed include transition point, free fluid, multiple fluid locations, small bowel fecalization, mesenteric edema, closed loop, and high-grad obstruction. All had low PPVs, ranging 21-41%. Using the three predictors identified, the PPV improved but remained low at 37-56% (p.397).

The table below (p.397) illustrates the utility of the three variables in a few combinations.


In the article, the authors state that they are currently (2015) pursuing a study applying the predictors to a different ASBO patient population so as to cross-validate this predictor model. A search for such a study in the published literature was not successful.

Additional Reading: Catena F, et al. Bologna guidelines for diagnosis and management of adhesive small bowel obstruction (ASBO): 2010 evidence-based guidelines of the World Society of Emergency Surgery. World Journal of Emergency Surgery. 2011 Jan 21;6:5. doi: 10.1186/1749-7922-6-5.