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Revista Colombiana de Gastroenterologia

Print version ISSN 0120-9957


DEL CASTILLO RANGEL, Fabián Rodrigo  and  ARANGO MOLANO, Lázaro Antonio. Determining Frequency of Hyperamylasemia and Pancreatitis in Patients after Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography. Rev Col Gastroenterol [online]. 2017, vol.32, n.3, pp.223-229. ISSN 0120-9957.

We have seen with concern that there is confusion regarding the appearance of pancreatitis and the transient elevation of amylases (hyperamylasemia without clinical repercussions) in the postoperative period following ERCP (endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography). For this reason, we embarked on the task of determining the prevalence of increased serum amylases and pancreatitis in patients who have undergone endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography according to demographic, clinical and procedural variables. This is a descriptive, prospective, analytical and observational study. The study population consisted of 98 patients treated in the Union of SAS Surgeons who required endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography.


Acute pancreatitis was found in 2% of the patients who had undergone ERCP (Two of the 98 cases studied). Thirty patients (30%) presented hyperamylasemia. Cannulation of the pancreatic was associated with post-ERCP pancreatitis (p <0.05). Pancreatic duct contrast had been used in one of the two patients who presented post-ERCP pancreatitis. Balloon dilation was associated with hyperamylasemia (p <0.041).


Post-ERCP pancreatitis was found in two patients (2%), both of whom also presented hyperamylasemia which is one of the criteria for diagnosis of pancreatitis. The rate in our group is at the lower end of the international range of averages from 1.8% to 7.2%. Asymptomatic hyperamylasemia was present in 30% of our group. Following ERCP, we recommend that there is no need to measure amylases in patients who do not present pain. Amylase levels will be elevated in a large number of cases and will only cause confusion.

Keywords : Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography; ERCP; choledocholithiasis; pancreatitis; hyperamylasemia; pancreatic duct.

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