Emergency Radiology

, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp 237–243 | Cite as

The revised Atlanta classification for acute pancreatitis: a CT imaging guide for radiologists

  • Y. SheuEmail author
  • A. Furlan
  • O. Almusa
  • G. Papachristou
  • K. T. Bae
Pictorial Essay


Accurate diagnosis and description of the various findings in acute pancreatitis is important for treatment. The original Atlanta classification for acute pancreatitis sought to create a uniform system for classifying the severity of acute pancreatitis as well as common language to describe the various events that can occur in acute pancreatitis. The goal was to allow accurate communication between physicians using standardized language so correct treatment options could be used. Since that time, advances in the understanding of acute pancreatitis as well as improvements in both interventions and imaging have led to criticisms of the system and its abandonment by physicians. A 2007 revision of the Atlanta classifications sought to address many of these issues. This article will explain the changes to the Atlanta classification system and provide pictorial examples of the findings in acute pancreatitis as described by the Atlanta classification system.


Atlanta classification Acute pancreatitis Acute peripancreatic fluid collection Pseudocyst Acute postnecrotic fluid collection Walled-off pancreatic necrosis 


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Copyright information

© Am Soc Emergency Radiol 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Y. Sheu
    • 1
    Email author
  • A. Furlan
    • 1
  • O. Almusa
    • 1
  • G. Papachristou
    • 2
  • K. T. Bae
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of RadiologyUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA
  2. 2.Department of GastroenterologyUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA

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