BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to analyze the presentation, characteristics, related investigation, and treatment results of major bile duct injuries (MBDI) after laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC).
METHODS: We performed a retrospective analysis of 27 patients who were treated between January 1995 and December 2002 for MBDI after LC at a single unit in a tertiary center. Major bile duct injury was defined according to the Strasberg classification. All patients underwent magnetic resonance cholangiography (MRC), percutaneous transhepatic cholangiography (PTC), or endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) to delineate the biliary anatomy and assess the level of injury. On the basis of the cholangiographic findings, all patients underwent Roux-en-Y hepaticojejunostomy after a waiting period of 8-12 weeks.
RESULTS: A total of 29 hepaticojejunostomies were performed in 27 patients. Seventeen patients (63%) presented with biliary fistula and ascites; 10 (27%) presented with obstructive jaundice. In 14 patients (52%) the MBDI was identified during the LC. Twenty patients (74%) had undergone one or more procedure before referral. Eight patients (30%) had E1, five patients (18.5%) had E2, nine patients (33%) had E3, and five patients (18.5%) had E4 injury. Two patients had early anastomotic stricture, for which redo hepaticojejunostomy with access loop was performed.
CONCLUSIONS: Major bile duct injury after LC commonly presents with biliary fistula and ascites. High-injuries are common after LC. Hepaticojejunostomy repair yields excellent results in these cases.
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