Send to

Choose Destination
World J Gastroenterol. 2010 Jun 14;16(22):2735-42.

Magnetic resonance imaging for local complications of acute pancreatitis: a pictorial review.

Author information

Sichuan Key Laboratory of Medical Imaging, Department of Radiology, Affiliated Hospital of North Sichuan Medical College, 63 Wenhua Road, Nanchong 637000, Sichuan Province, China.


Acute pancreatitis is a common disease characterized by sudden upper abdominal pain and vomiting. Alcoholism and choledocholithiasis are the most common factors for this disease. The choice of treatment for acute pancreatitis might be affected by local complications, such as local hemorrhage in or around the pancreas, and peripancreatic infection or pseudoaneurysm. Diagnostic imaging modalities for acute pancreatitis have a significant role in confirming the diagnosis of the disease, helping detect the extent of pancreatic necrosis, and for diagnosing local complications. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) might be indicated in acute pancreatitis for detecting and characterizing local complications of acute pancreatitis that involve necrotic, hemorrhagic, infectious, vascular, and pseudocyst disorders. The general MRI sequences for pancreatitis require the combined use of T1-weighted, T2-weighted sequences, and magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography. For imaging of pancreatic necrosis, the combination of T1-weighted and T2-weighted findings with dynamic contrast-enhanced imaging gives a comprehensive evaluation of the extent of necrosis and full range of inflammatory extension. For imaging of infectious complications, dynamic contrast-enhanced examinations might help differentiate pancreatic cellulitis or abscesses, from pancreatic fluid collection or simple pseudocysts. For vascular abnormalities, the combination of cross-sectional pancreatic parenchyma imaging with MRA represents a single diagnostic modality for the full evaluation of peripancreatic artery and vein involvement, such as arterial pseudoaneurysms and venous thromboses. The purpose of this pictorial review is to examine the MRI appearances of various local complications of acute pancreatitis and to discuss the practical setup of MRI in local complications of acute pancreatitis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center