Current utility of staging laparoscopy for pancreatic and peripancreatic neoplasms

Department of Surgical Oncology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY 10021, USA.
Journal of the American College of Surgeons (Impact Factor: 4.45). 03/2008; 206(3):445-50. DOI: 10.1016/j.jamcollsurg.2007.09.021
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The routine use of staging laparoscopy in patients with radiographically resectable pancreatic and peripancreatic neoplasms remains controversial.
We reviewed a prospective database that identified 1,045 patients who underwent staging laparoscopy for radiographically resectable pancreatic or peripancreatic tumors between 1995 and 2005. Radiographic resectability was determined by review of radiographic reports, surgeons' notes, and cross-sectional imaging studies. Factors were assessed for their association with the laparoscopic identification of radiographically occult unresectable disease. Recursive partitioning was used to build a decision tree, with laparoscopic identification of unresectable disease as the outcomes, including only patients since 1999 (modern imaging) and factors available preoperatively.
Unresectable disease was identified laparoscopically in 145 of the 1,045 radiographically resectable patients (14%). Factors associated with radiographically occult unresectable disease included the time period of the study, whether imaging was performed at our institution (internal versus external imaging), primary site, histology, weight loss, and jaundice. Primary site (pancreatic versus nonpancreatic) was identified as the strongest predictor of yield. In patients with nonpancreatic tumors, the yield of laparoscopy was 4%. In patients with pancreatic tumors, the yield of laparoscopy was 14% overall, but was 8.4% in patients with internal imaging versus 17% in patients with external imaging (p < 0.01). This higher-risk subgroup was partitioned by the presence of weight loss, then by primary site within the pancreas.
During the time period of this study, the yield of staging laparoscopy decreased and exceeded 10% only for patients with pancreatic adenocarcinoma. When high-quality cross-sectional imaging reveals no evidence of unresectable disease, routine staging laparoscopy may not be warranted for pancreatic or peripancreatic tumors other than presumed pancreatic adenocarcinoma.

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