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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 9

of 'Cholangioscopy and pancreatoscopy'

Electrohydraulic lithotripsy in 111 patients: a safe and effective therapy for difficult bile duct stones.
Arya N, Nelles SE, Haber GB, Kim YI, Kortan PK
Am J Gastroenterol. 2004;99(12):2330.
BACKGROUND: Choledocholithiasis and intrahepatic bile duct stones pose a significant health hazard, especially in the elderly. The large stone not removable with conventional endoscopic techniques, can be effectively and safely managed with electrohydraulic lithotripsy (EHL).
METHODS: This study is a retrospective review of consecutive patients at the Wellesley Central Hospital and St. Michael's Hospital, who underwent peroral endoscopic fragmentation of bile duct stones with EHL under direct cholangioscopic control using a "mother-baby" endoscopic system between October 1990 and March 2002.
RESULTS: To date, 111 patients have been analyzed. Of the 111 patients reviewed, 94 patients have had complete records and were included in this study. Mean follow-up was 26.2 months (range 0-80). Prior to EHL, 93 of 94 patients (99%) had endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) and failed standard stone extraction techniques (mean 1.9 ERCPs/patient, range 0-5). Indications for EHL were large stones (81 patients) or a narrow caliber bile duct below a stone of average size (13 patients). Successful fragmentation (61 complete, 28 partial) was achieved in 89 of 93 patients (96%) (1 patient was excluded from analysis due to a broken endoscope). Fragmentation failures were due to targeting problems (2 patients) and hard stones (2 patients). Seventy-six percent of patients required 1 EHL session, 14% required 2 sessions, and 10% required 3 or more. All patients with successful stone fragmentation required post-EHL balloon or basket extraction of fragments. Complications included: cholangitis and/or jaundice (13 patients); mild hemobilia (1 patient); mild post-ERCP pancreatitis (1 patient); biliary leak (1 patient); and bradycardia (1 patient). There were no deaths related to EHL. Final stone clearance was achieved in 85 of 94 patients (90%).
CONCLUSIONS: EHL via peroral endoscopic choledochoscopy is a highly successful and safe technique for use in the management of difficult choledocholithiasis and intrahepatic stones. This study has shown a stone fragmentation rate of 96% (89 of 93 patients), and a final stone clearance rate of 90% (85 of 94 patients).
Division of Gastroenterology, St. Michael's Hospital, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.