Anatomical Location of Pathology Is Predictive of Prolonged Fluoroscopy Time During ERCP: A Multicenter American Study

Amer A. Alkhatib, Ala A. Abdel Jalil, Douglas Orrick Faigel, Rahul Pannala, Michael Crowell, M. E. Harrison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Different factors have been associated with prolonged fluoroscopy time (FT) during endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP). Aim: We hypothesize that FT depends on both the anatomical location of the pathology managed during ERCP and the complexity of the ERCP. Methods: Three centers participated in a retrospective multi-center cohort study. Data on patient demographics, ERCP complexity, and the location of pathology were collected. The relationships between FT and the location of pathology, ERCP complexity, patient demographics, and ERCP maneuvers, respectively, were analyzed. Prolonged FT was defined as a FT > 10 min. Results: A total of 442 cases underwent ERCP in three different centers (301 cases, 76 cases, and 65 cases in centers A, B, and C, respectively) by six endoscopists. The median FT for all cases was 282 (range 8–3,516) s. Mean FT increased progressively according to anatomical location in the order extrahepatic cases {n = 298; mean FT 292 [95 % confidence interval (CI) 263–322] s}, pancreatic cases [n = 27; mean FT 359 (95 % CI 200–517) s], and intrahepatic cases [n = 117; mean FT 736 s (95 % CI 635–836) s]. Mean FT increased progressively with the complexity scale, with mean FT for Grade I, 218 (95 % CI 138–299) s; Grade II, 295 (95 % 261–329) s; Grade III, 586 (95 % CI 508–663) s; Grade IV, 636 (95 % CI 437–834) s. Multivariable analysis confirmed that prolonged FT was independently associated with anatomical location of the targeted pathology during ERCP—but not with ERCP complexity and endoscopy center. Conclusion: Prolonged FT during ERCP is associated most strongly with intrahepatic cases. FT can be used most effectively as a quality measure if it is stratified according to presence or absence of intrahepatic cases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1787-1792
Number of pages6
JournalDigestive Diseases and Sciences
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 5 2015


  • Bile
  • Biliary
  • ERCP
  • Fluoroscopy
  • Fluoroscopy time
  • Pancreatic
  • Radiation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology
  • Physiology


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