Hepatic abscess following biliary tract surgery. Etiology, treatment and results
Biliary Tract Surgical Procedures
Experience of seven consecutive cases of liver abscess following biliary tract surgery is presented. The age range was 41-83 years, and six of the patients were women. The interval from operation to appearance of abscess was 10 days to 14 months. Primary surgical drainage was used in two patients, who remained clinically well 6 months and 2 years later. Four of five patients with initially percutaneous drainage subsequently underwent operative drainage, but one refused further surgery and died 8 days later of sepsis. Multiple factors may predispose to both cholangitis and hepatic abscess following biliary tract surgery. Radiologic investigation of abscess must also focus on identifying underlying biliary pathology. Bactericholia and obstructed bile flow are two of the most important etiologic factors in hepatic abscess after biliary surgery. Experience with these cases suggests that a surgical approach may be preferable to percutaneous techniques in management also of the associated biliary pathology.