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Revista Colombiana de Gastroenterologia

Print version ISSN 0120-9957


GOMEZ ZULETA, Martín; MELGAR, Cristian  and  ARBELAEZ, Víctor. Does age influence complications of endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)?. Rev Col Gastroenterol [online]. 2010, vol.25, n.4, pp.349-353. ISSN 0120-9957.

Introduction. As living conditions improve average ages increase daily. For this reason we see more and more older patients who have a greater incidence of hepatobiliary pathologies, and who need ERCP (Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography). The main question is that, if this age-group has a greater frequency of complications, it makes their access to this important examination more difficult. Methods. A five year long prospective study of ERCP cases and controls was performed from 2004 to 2009. Procedures were performed at the ‘El Tunal’ Hospital in Bogota, Colombia. They were done by specialists who perform more than 500 procedures every year. Age greater or less than 80 years old was the predictor variable used, and ERCP complications were outcome variables. These included pancreatitis, perforation, hemorrhaging and respiratory depression. Results. During the 5 year period 71 ERCPs (33.8%) were performed on patients who were over the age of 80. They were randomly paired with 139 patients (66.2%), who were under the age of 80 (control group). There were no significant differences in mortality rates between the two groups. Three patients died in the study group and two in the control group. Although there were no globally significant differences between the two groups for other complications related to the procedure, the more elderly patients showed more perforations than did the rest of patients. Conclusion. Patients over the age of 80 year have similar rates of complications as do younger patients. They may be prepared for ERCP, even though there is a risk from higher levels of comorbidities such as high blood pressure.

Keywords : ERCP; complications; elders; common bile duct stones.

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