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Pancreas. 2013 May;42(4):584-8. doi: 10.1097/MPA.0b013e31827308c8.

Management for pancreatolithiasis: a Japanese multicenter study.

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Japanese Study Group for Pancreato-Biliary Lithiasis, Japan.



A Japanese multicenter study of pancreatolithiasis was performed to investigate its clinical features and determine treatment strategies for pancreatolithiasis.


A retrospective study was performed on 916 patients managed in 34 institutions for a period of more than 5 years.


The treatment methods were extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL) in 479 patients, surgery in 133, and endoscopy alone in 68. Fragmentation of stones after ESWL was achieved in 92.4% of the patients. However, complete stone clearance was achieved in 49.4% of the patients after ESWL alone. The complete stone clearance rate was lower after ESWL than after endoscopy (87.9%). The incidence of early complications was significantly higher after surgery (13.3%) than after ESWL (6.1%). The frequencies of total stone recurrence after ESWL (22.5%) and endoscopy (12.0%) were significantly higher than that after surgery (1.5%). After ESWL (17.6%), abdominal pain recurred significantly more frequently than after surgery (2.2%). Stones and abdominal pain most often recurred within 3 years after ESWL and endoscopy.


First-line treatment of pancreatic stones should be ESWL alone or with endoscopy because of its minimal invasiveness and low incidence of early complications. Surgery should be performed on patients in whom ESWL and endoscopy failed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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