Preoperative endoscopic tattooing of pancreatic body and tail lesions decreases operative time for laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy

Department of Surgery, The Johns Hopkins Hospital, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21231, USA.
Surgery (Impact Factor: 3.38). 08/2010; 148(2):371-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.surg.2010.04.008
Source: PubMed


Precise and expedient localization of small pancreatic tumors during laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy can be difficult owing to the decreased tactile ability of laparoscopy and the homogenous appearance of the surrounding retroperitoneal fat. Precise localization of the lesion is critical to achieving adequate margins of resection while preserving as much healthy pancreas as possible. The objective in this study was to determine the effect of endoscopic tattooing of the distal pancreas on operative time.
We reviewed retrospectively 36 consecutive patients who had a laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy at our institution over a 4-year period (2006-2009). Ten patients underwent preoperative tattooing via an endoscopic transgastric technique using ultrasound guidance. The tattoo was performed using 2-4 cc of sterile purified carbon particles injected immediately proximal and anterior to the pancreatic lesion. Operative times were compared according to the presence of a tattoo.
The endoscopically placed tattoo was easily visible upon entering the lesser sac in all 10 patients at laparoscopy. Patients with a tattoo had a shorter operative time (median, 128.5 minutes; range, 53-180) compared with patients without a tattoo (median, 180 minutes; range, 120-240; P < .01). None of the tattoo group required repeat surgery, whereas 1 patient who was not tattooed required re-resection for a lesion missed in the initial specimen. There were no complications associated with the endoscopic ultrasound-guided tattoo.
Endoscopic ultrasound-guided tattooing of pancreas lesions before a laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy is safe and is associated with decreased operative time compared with nontattooed patients. This technique can allow for quick and precise localization of the lesion, allowing for optimal preservation of pancreas parenchyma and demarcating an appropriate line of resection.

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    • "In a study of 36 patients who underwent laparoscopic distal pancreatictomy, 10 patients had preoperative endoscopic tattooing. Patients in the preoperative tattooing group had shorter operation times compared to the control group [10]. Figure 1 Illustrate tattooing of duodenal lesion prior to laparoscopic removal. "

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    ABSTRACT: Precise localization of small pancreatic tumors during laparoscopic distal pancreatectomy (LDP) can be difficult because of decreased tactile ability of laparoscopy and the homogeneous appearance of the pancreas and surrounding retroperitoneal fat. Precise localization of the lesion is critical to achieving adequate margins of resection and preserving healthy pancreatic tissue. EUS-guided fine-needle tattooing (EUS-FNT) of a pancreatic lesion before LDP has been described in single case reports, but no large series have reported its effectiveness in patients undergoing LDP. To assess the feasibility, safety, and efficacy of EUS-FNT in consecutive patients undergoing LDP. Retrospective cohort study. Tertiary-care referral hospital. This study involved 30 consecutive patients who underwent LDP from 2008 to 2010. Thirteen had EUS-FNT followed by LDP, and 17 had LDP alone. LDP or EUS-FNT with a sterile carbon-particle tattoo followed by LDP. The following features were examined: the technical success and complication rates of EUS-FNT, visibility of the tattoo at the time of laparoscopy, durability of the tattoo, and pathologic absence of tumor at the resection margin. The final pathology of pancreatic lesions of patients who had EUS-FNT was similar to those who had LDP alone. The median resected tumor size was significantly larger for the LDP-alone patients (median 4.0 cm vs 1.3 cm; P = .03). Thirty-one percent (4/13) of lesions in the EUS-FNT group were not visualized by prior preoperative pancreatic protocol CT. EUS-FNT was feasible in all 13 patients at laparoscopy, with R0 resection and negative final pathology margins in all cases. The tattoo was visible in all 13 EUS-FNT cases, with mean time from EUS-FNT to surgery of 20.3 days (range, 3-69 days). There were no significant complications associated with EUS-FNT. Small, retrospective, single-center study. Preoperative EUS-FNT of lesions was technically feasible and safe, and it assisted in the localization of lesions in patients before LDP. The carbon particle tattoo was durable and visible in all cases.
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