Pancreatitis secondary to percutaneous liver biopsy-associated hemobilia

Erik C. Van Os, Bret T. Petersen

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34 Scopus citations


Hemobilia refers to hemorrhage in the biliary tree and is most commonly associated with accidental and iatrogenic trauma. Rarely has pancreatitis been reported in association with hemobilia and never as a consequence of percutaneous liver biopsy-induced hemobilia. We report the case of a 64-yr- old man who presented with pancreatitis 6 days after a percutaneous liver biopsy. Within 24 h of admission, he developed hematochezia. Emergency endoscopy was performed, and with a side-viewing duodenoscope, blood and clot were clearly seen oozing from the papilla. The origin of bleeding was identified angiographically as a pseudoaneurysm of the right hepatic artery. Bleeding stopped and pancreatitis resolved after angiographic embolization of the hepatic artery pseudoaneurysm. A review of the English language literature reveals eight well-documented cases of pancreatitis associated with hemobilia, including the current report. Seven cases were associated with ruptured hepatic artery aneurysms and one case with hemorrhagic acalculous cholecystitis. Six of the patients received appropriate therapy to stop bleeding and recovered uneventfully. Pancreatitis should be recognized as a potential important complication of hemobilia. In addition, hemobilia should he considered in the differential diagnosis for those patients with apparent biliary or idiopathic acute pancreatitis and no stones seen on ultrasonography. When bleeding is stopped via surgical or radiological methods, the clinical course of hemobilia-associated pancreatitis appears to be benign.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)577-580
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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