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Hepatogastroenterology. 2011 Mar-Apr;58(106):616-22.

Optimizing management of pancreatic cysts--prospective re-assessment for 157 cases.

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Department of Gastroenterology, Rambam Healthcare Campus, Haifa, Israel.



Ongoing debate continues regarding the appropriate management of pancreatic cysts (PCs). Disagreement prevails regarding frequency of needed follow-up, if and when to perform any PC needle biopsy and indications for surgical resection. EUS is increasingly used to help determine management of PCs.


One hundred and fifty seven consecutive patients with PCs were identified out of 5000 patients who underwent EUS between 1995-2007. In 2008, these patients were then prospectively provided clinical follow-up, and CEA, CA19-9 and CRP.


No symptoms could be definitively related to the PCs. Twenty four of 157 patients with suspected malignant cysts, mucinous cysts or IPMN had undergone surgical treatment. Whipple's operation was performed in 14 patients and distal pancreatectomy in 10 patients. Fifty PCs were located in the head of pancreas. In 89 patients prospective blood tests were performed; in 6 of them elevated levels of CA-19-9 were detected, 3 of these also had elevated serum CEA. Twelve patients had increased CRP values. No complication (requiring hospitalization) and no mortality related to EUS had occurred.


Elements identified as important for assessment of PCs included: size, serum and fluid markers, imaging characteristics and clinical follow-up. These factors should be included in the recommended guidelines.

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