Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 57, Issue 12, pp 3286–3292 | Cite as

Comparison of Three Types of Precut Technique to Achieve Common Bile Duct Cannulation: A Retrospective Analysis of 274 Cases

  • Panagiotis Katsinelos
  • Stergios Gkagkalis
  • Grigoris Chatzimavroudis
  • Athanasios Beltsis
  • Sotiris Terzoudis
  • Christos Zavos
  • Anthi Gatopoulou
  • Georgia Lazaraki
  • Themistoklis Vasiliadis
  • Jannis Kountouras
Original Article



The aim of this retrospective study was to evaluate the success rate and complications of three precut techniques of sphincterotomy after failure of conventional techniques of cannulation of common bile duct (CBD).

Patients and Methods

Between January 2003 and October 2011, 2,903 consecutive ERCPs were performed in patients with naïve major papilla. In 283 patients in whom biliary cannulation was not achieved, precut technique was performed and these patients were included in the study.


A total of 274 patients were included in the final analysis. Needle-knife papillotomy (NKP) was performed in 129 cases (47.1 %), suprapapillary fistulotomy (SPF) in 78 patients (28.5 %), and transpancreatic sphincterotomy (TPS) in 67 cases (24.5 %). No significant difference was observed in the initial and eventual success rate of biliary cannulation between the three groups. Overall, complications occurred in 54 patients (19.7 %), of which 33 (25.6 %) were with NKP, 6 (7.7 %) with SPF and 15 (22.4 %) with TPS, respectively, a difference statistically significant favoring the SPF group (p = 0.006). Post-procedure acute pancreatitis was developed in 27 cases (20.9 %) with NKP, compared to two cases (2.6 %) with SPF and 15 cases (22.4 %) with TPS, a difference statistically significant favoring the SPF group. No difference was observed between the groups with regard to the occurrence of post-procedure hemorrhage and perforation.


The three types of precut sphincterotomy have no different overall CBD cannulation rates; SPF reduces post-ERCP pancreatitis risk.


Precut technique Needle-knife papillotomy Suprapapillary fistulotomy Transpancreatic sphincterotomy 


Conflict of interest

Nothing to declare.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Panagiotis Katsinelos
    • 1
  • Stergios Gkagkalis
    • 1
  • Grigoris Chatzimavroudis
    • 1
  • Athanasios Beltsis
    • 1
  • Sotiris Terzoudis
    • 1
  • Christos Zavos
    • 2
  • Anthi Gatopoulou
    • 1
  • Georgia Lazaraki
    • 1
  • Themistoklis Vasiliadis
    • 1
  • Jannis Kountouras
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Endoscopy and Motility Unit, G. Gennimatas General Hospital, School of MedicineAristotle University of ThessalonikiThessalonikiGreece
  2. 2.Department of Gastroenterology, Second Medical ClinicAristotle University of Thessaloniki, Ippokration HospitalThessalonikiGreece

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