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Curr Gastroenterol Rep. 2006 Apr;8(2):104-10.

Endoscopic therapy for chronic pancreatitis: an evidence-based review.

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Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL 35294-0007, USA.


In the setting of chronic pancreatitis, pancreatic ductal obstruction, and ductal leak, pseudocyst formation and biliary obstruction present many challenges for endoscopists. Although chronic pancreatitis has a variety of clinical manifestations, most commonly patients present with intermittent or chronic abdominal pain. Recent studies suggest stenting of pancreatic ductal strictures has a significant impact on reducing chronic pain. The removal of ductal calculi, presumably from relieving obstruction, also improves abdominal pain. When the site of leak is bypassed, ductal leaks may be cured by endoscopic stenting. Multiple plastic bile duct stents to treat chronic pancreatitis-associated bile duct stricture can delay the need for surgery. Although these endoscopic techniques have been beneficial for many patients, further study is warranted to better define their role in chronic pancreatitis compared with well-established surgical techniques.

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