Acute pancreatitis is a common disorder in which ensuing serious complications can be fatal.
In this study, researchers from Spain described a large series of patients with severe acute pancreatitis (SAP) who were admitted to their hospital. The research team aimed to identify factors predicting mortality.
The team performed a retrospective study, assessing all patients with SAP diagnosed between 1996 and 2000 according to the Atlanta criteria.
The team found that of a total of 363 acute pancreatitis patients, 67 developed SAP.
|31% of the patients died.|
The mean age of the patients was 69.
The researchers found that the most common etiology was biliary.
Of the 67 patients, 55% developed necrosis, and the most common systemic complication was respiratory failure (45%), followed by acute renal failure (36%) and shock (21%).
The team found that 31% of the patients died.
They determined that factors significantly related to mortality were age, upper digestive tract bleeding, acute renal failure, respiratory failure and shock.
However, pseudocysts appeared to have a protective effect.
When analyzed using multivariate methods, the team identified age, acute renal failure and respiratory failure as independent prognostic factors.
Dr Compañy's team concluded, "Patients with SAP mainly died due to systemic complications, especially acute renal failure and respiratory failure".
"Necrosis (in the absence or presence of infection) was not correlated with increased mortality".
"A pseudocyst was found to be a protective factor, probably because the definition itself led to the selection of patients who had survived multiorgan failure".