Likelihood of malignancy in gallbladder polyps and outcomes following cholecystectomy in primary sclerosing cholangitis

John E. Eaton, Erin W. Thackeray, Keith D. Lindor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


Objectives: Patients with primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC) have an increased risk for gallbladder cancer. We aimed to define the postoperative outcomes in PSC patients after cholecystectomy and determine if size of a gallbladder lesion on imaging predicts the presence of neoplasia. Methods: We conducted a retrospective review of patients with PSC who underwent cholecystectomy at Mayo Clinic between 1 January 1995 and 31 December 2008. Patients with a prior history of a liver transplant or cholangiocarcinoma were excluded. Results: A total of 57 patients were included in our primary analysis during the early postoperative period. The most common indication for undergoing a cholecystectomy was the presence of a gallbladder polyp or mass. The sensitivity and specificity of a gallbladder lesion of 0.80 cm and the presence of gallbladder neoplasia was 100% (95% confidence interval (CI) 77-100%) and 70% (95% CI 35-93%), respectively. Of the patients, 23 (40%) had an early postoperative complication. The Child-Pugh score was the only predictor of postoperative outcomes in the multivariate model (odds ratio 1.78, 95% CI 1.11-3.12, P=0.02). Conclusions: Cholecystectomy in patients with PSC is associated with a high morbidity. Gallbladder polyps <0.80 cm are unlikely to be malignant and observation of these small polyps should be considered. A higher Child-Pugh score was associated with early postoperative complications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)431-439
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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