Long-term Follow-up of a Randomized Trial Comparing the Beger and Frey Procedures for Patients Suffering From Chronic Pancreatitis

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Objective:To report on the long-term follow-up of a randomized clinical trial comparing pancreatic head resection according to Beger and limited pancreatic head excision combined with longitudinal pancreatico-jejunostomy according to Frey for surgical treatment of chronic pancreatitis.Summary Background Data:Resection and drainage are the 2 basic surgical principles in surgical treatment of chronic pancreatitis. They are combined to various degrees by the classic duodenum preserving pancreatic head resection (Beger) and limited pancreatic head excision combined with longitudinal pancreatico-jejunostomy (Frey). These procedures have been evaluated in a randomized controlled trial by our group. Long-term follow up has not been reported so far.Methods:Seventy-four patients suffering from chronic pancreatitis were initially allocated to DPHR (n = 38) or LE (n = 36). This postoperative follow-up included the following parameters: mortality, quality of life (QL), pain (validated pain score), and exocrine and endocrine function.Results:Median follow-up was 104 months (72-144). Seven patients were not available for follow-up (Beger = 4; Frey = 3). There was no significant difference in late mortality (31% [8/26] versus 32% [8/25]). No significant differences were found regarding QL (global QL 66.7 [0–100] versus 58.35 [0–100]), pain score (11.25 [0–75] versus 11.25 [0–99.75]), exocrine (88% versus 78%) or endocrine insufficiency (56% versus 60%).Conclusions:After almost 9 years’ long-term follow-up, there was no difference regarding mortality, quality of life, pain, or exocrine or endocrine insufficiency within the 2 groups. The decision which procedure to choose should be based on the surgeon's experience.

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