A meta-analysis of the long-term effects of chronic pancreatitis surgical treatments: duodenum-preserving pancreatic head resection versus pancreatoduodenectomy

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Surgery is regarded as the most effective treatment to relieve pain and reduce complications in chronic pancreatitis (CP). Two major strategies exist: duodenum-preserving pancreatic head resection (DPPHR) and pancreatoduodenectomy (PD). Many studies suggest that DPPHR offers advantages during surgery and in the short-term; however, the long-term effects have not been thoroughly investigated. We analyzed the long-term outcomes of DPPHR and PD, over follow-up times of at least 1 year, to determine the optimal surgical treatment for CP.


We systemically reviewed all CP surgical treatment reports, and only included randomized controlled trials (RCT) comparing DPPHR and PD, excluding unqualified studies using several pre-specified criteria. When multiple publications of a single trial were found, the most comprehensive current data were selected. Characteristics of the study populations and long-term postoperative outcome parameters were collected. The quality of the studies and data was analyzed using RevMan 4.2 software.


Five trials were qualified for meta-analysis, with 261 participants in total (114 in the DPPHR group and 147 in the PD group). There were no significant differences in the age, gender, or indications for surgery of each group. At the mean of 5.7-year (1-14 years) follow-up examination, DPPHR and PD resulted in equally effective pain relief, exocrine and endocrine function, and similar mortality rates (P >0.05); however, DPPHR patients had improved global quality of life and weight gain, and reduced diarrhea and fatigue (P <0.05).


Conclusion DPPHR and PD result in equal pain relief, mortality, and pancreatic function; however, DPPHR provides superior long-term outcomes.

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