Long-term Impact of Bile Duct Injury on Morbidity, Mortality, Quality of Life, and Work Related Limitations

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Assessment of long-term comprehensive outcome of multimodality treatment of bile duct injury (BDI) in terms of morbidity, mortality, quality of life (QoL), survival, and work related limitations.


The impact of BDI on work ability is scarcely investigated.


BDI patients referred to a tertiary center after BDI were included (n = 800). QoL and work related limitations (HLQ) were compared with 175 control patients after uncomplicated laparoscopic cholecystectomy.


The mean survival after BDI was 17.6 years (95% confidence interval, CI, 17.2–18.0 years). BDI related mortality was 3.5% (28/800). Corrected for sex, ASA classification, treatment and type of injury, survival is worse in male patients (hazard ratio, HR 1.50, 95% CI 1.01–2.33) and progressively worse with higher ASA classification (ASA2: 5.25 (2.94–9.37), ASA3: 18.1 (9.79–33.3). Patients treated surgically had a significantly better survival (HR: 0.45 (95% CI: 0.25–0.80). BDI patients reported a significantly worse physical QoL compared with the control group and worse disease specific QoL. Loss of productivity of work was significantly higher among BDI patients. There also was a significant hindrance in unpaid work. A higher number of bile duct injury patients were receiving disability benefits after long-term follow-up (34.9% vs 19.6%, P = 0.004).


Reconstructive surgery in BDI patients is associated with improved survival. Although the clinical outcome of multidisciplinary treatment of bile duct injury is good, it is associated with a significant decrease in QoL, loss of productivity in both paid and unpaid work and high rates of disability benefits use.

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