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J Am Coll Surg. 2019 Apr;228(4):400-412.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.jamcollsurg.2018.12.042. Epub 2019 Jan 26.

Development of Diabetes after Pancreaticoduodenectomy: Results of a 10-Year Series Using Prospective Endocrine Evaluation.

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Department of Surgery, Emory University, Atlanta, GA.
Department of Surgery, Emory University, Atlanta, GA; Winship Cancer Institute, Emory University, Atlanta, GA.
Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA.
Division of Endocrinology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA.
Department of Surgery, Emory University, Atlanta, GA; Winship Cancer Institute, Emory University, Atlanta, GA. Electronic address:



Limited literature is available on the development of impaired glucose tolerance and diabetes mellitus after pancreaticoduodenectomy. The primary aim was to define the diabetic phenotype and correlate preoperative glycemic laboratory results to new-onset diabetes after pancreaticoduodenectomy.


In this prospective study, perioperative fasting and postprandial (oral glucose tolerance test) plasma glucose, glycated hemoglobin, insulin, and c-peptide were measured in consecutive patients undergoing pancreaticoduodenectomy by the senior author from 2006 to 2017. American Diabetes Association definitions were used for glycemic classifications. Multivariate risk factor analysis was performed.


Of 774 identified patients, 371 diabetics were excluded and 403 patients were included: 167 and 236 were preoperatively classified as nondiabetic and prediabetic, respectively. The incidence rates of diabetes at 120 months post pancreaticoduodenectomy were 9.0% (nondiabetics), 22.0% (prediabetics), and 16.6% (overall). Patients in whom diabetes developed demonstrated a 3-fold larger difference between oral glucose tolerance test and fasting glucose (Δ), and 2-fold larger Δinsulin and Δc-peptide values. Tiered multivariate analysis identified glycated hemoglobin >5.4% with a relative risk (RR) of 2.944 (p = 0.047) as an independent predictor of impaired glucose tolerance and diabetes mellitus. Analysis of patients stratified by preoperative classification identified fasting glucose >95 mg/dL (nondiabetics, RR 1.925; p = 0.002), and glycated hemoglobin ≥5.4% (prediabetics, RR 3.125; p = 0.040) as independent risk factors for diabetes. Compared with nondiabetics, prediabetics classified by any laboratory results demonstrated an RR of 2.471 (p = 0.001) for diabetes developing postoperatively. There was no association between primary pathology, advancing age, or BMI and increased risk of diabetes development.


Diabetes will develop after pancreaticoduodenectomy in approximately 16.6% of patients. A preoperative glycated hemoglobin >5.4% independently predicts new-onset diabetes. Pre- and postoperative endocrine analysis remains paramount for proper patient risk stratification.

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