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28.01.2020 | Ausgabe 12/2020

Surgical Endoscopy 12/2020

Tailored access to the hepatobiliary system in post-bariatric patients: a tertiary care bariatric center experience

Surgical Endoscopy > Ausgabe 12/2020
Dino Kröll, Alexandra Charlotte Müller, Philipp C. Nett, Reiner Wiest, Johannes Maubach, Guido Stirnimann, Daniel Candinas, Yves Michael Borbély
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The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1007/​s00464-019-07343-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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In bariatric surgery patients, pancreaticobiliary access via endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) is technically challenging and the optimal approach for the evaluation and treatment of biliary tree-related pathologies has been debated. Besides laparoscopy-assisted ERCP (LA-ERCP) as standard of care, EUS-directed transgastric ERCP (EDGE) and hepaticogastrostomy (HGS) with placement of a fully covered metal stent have emerged as novel techniques. The objective of this study was to evaluate safety and efficacy of three different endoscopic approaches (LA-ERCP, EDGE, and HGS) in bariatric patients.


In this retrospective review, consecutive patients with Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) and Sleeve Gastrectomy (SG) who underwent from 2013 to 2019 a LA-ERCP, an EDGE, or a HGS at a tertiary care reference center for bariatric surgery were analyzed. Patient demographics, type of procedure and indication, data regarding cannulation and therapeutic intervention of the common bile duct (procedure success), and clinical outcomes were analyzed.


A total of 19 patients were included. Indications for LA-ERCP, EDGE, or HGS were mostly choledocholithiasis (78.9%) and in a few cases papillitis stenosans. Eight patients (57.1%) with LA-ERCP underwent concomitant cholecystectomy. Procedure success was achieved in 100%. Adverse events (AEs) were identified in 15.7% of patients (all ERCP related). All AEs were rated as moderate and there were no serious AEs.


This case series indicates that ERCP via a transgastric approach (LA-ERCP, EDGE, or HGS) is a minimally invasive, effective, and feasible method to access the biliary tree in bariatric patients. These techniques offer an appealing alternative treatment option compared to percutaneous transhepatic cholangiography and drainage- or deep enteroscopy-assisted ERCP. In bariatric patients who earlier had a cholecystectomy, EUS-guided techniques were the preferred treatment options for biliary pathologies.

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