Long-term health after pancreatic surgery: the view from 9.5 years

Sophie E. Mayeux, Wooil Kwon, Vilma L. Rosario, Irene Rossmer, Beth A. Schrope, John A. Chabot, Michael D. Kluger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Discussing the impact of pancreatic surgery on long-term health is poorly understood, but necessary for informed consent. Given the increased number of pancreatic operations being performed annually, further investigation is necessary. Methods: Patients surviving longer than 5 years after pancreatic surgery were surveyed for postoperative hospitalizations, operations, pain, nutrition and diabetes. Variables were analyzed according to patient and peri-operative variables, and validated using medical records. Results: Eighty individuals completed the survey; median follow-up was 9.5 years (IQR:6.43,12.73). 47.5% underwent a pancreatoduodenectomy, and 25.0% a distal pancreatectomy; 40.0% had adenocarcinoma. 57.1% reported long-term weight loss, of which 65.9% was unintentional. While 1.3% took pancreatic enzymes before surgery, 38.8% utilized after. 12.5% had diabetes before, and 28.6% after surgery; 22 of 30 patients required insulin replacement therapy (73.3%). 41.3% reported hospitalizations, 17.5% required endoscopies and 28.8% additional operations after full recovery. Need for additional interventions were not related to pathology or post-operative complications, but were more common among patients undergoing a Whipple. Conclusion: More than half of patients will have a long-term medical complication attributable to pancreatectomy. In comparison to the literature, it may be inferred that consequences occur within the first few years after surgery, and do not compound over time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)595-600
Number of pages6
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2021

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