External Pancreatic Duct Stent Decreases Pancreatic Fistula Rate After Pancreaticoduodenectomy: Prospective Multicenter Randomized Trial

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Abstract

Objective:

Pancreatic fistula (PF) is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality after pancreaticoduodenectomy (PD). The aim of this multicenter prospective randomized trial was to compare the results of PD with an external drainage stent versus no stent.

Methods:

Between 2006 and 2009, 158 patients who underwent PD were randomized intraoperatively to either receive an external stent inserted across the anastomosis to drain the pancreatic duct (n = 77) or no stent (n = 81). The criteria of inclusion were soft pancreas and a diameter of wirsung <3 mm. The primary study end point was PF rate defined as amylase-rich fluid (amylase concentration >3 times the upper limit of normal serum amylase level) collected from the peripancreatic drains after postoperative day 3. CT scan was routinely done on day 7.

Results:

The 2 groups were comparable concerning demographic data, underlying pathologies, presenting symptoms, presence of comorbid illness, and proportion of patients with preoperative biliary drainage. Mortality, morbidity, and PF rates were 3.8%, 51.8%, and 34.2%, respectively. Stented group had a significantly lower overall PF (26% vs. 42%; P = 0.034), morbidity (41.5% vs. 61.7%; P = 0.01), and delayed gastric emptying (7.8% vs. 27.2%; P = 0.001) rates compared with nonstented group. Radiologic or surgical intervention for PF was required in 9 patients in the stented group and 12 patients in the nonstented group. There were no significant differences in mortality rate (3.7% vs. 3.9%; P = 0.37) and in hospital stay (22 days vs. 26 days; P = 0.11).

Conclusion:

External drainage of pancreatic duct with a stent reduced. PF and overall morbidity rates after PD in high risk patients (soft pancreatic texture and a nondilated pancreatic duct). This study is registered at http://www.clinicaltrials.gov: Clinical trial ID# NCT01068886.

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