To investigate the use of Seamguard, a bioabsorbable staple line–reinforcement product, to prevent pancreatic leak after distal pancreatectomy.
Design, Setting, and Participants
A retrospective study examined 85 consecutive patients undergoing distal pancreatectomy at an academic institution from September 5, 1997, to September 30, 2007.
Main Outcome Measures
Pancreatic fistula and overall mortality and morbidity.
In February 2004, the use of Seamguard in distal pancreas resections was introduced at our institution. Indications for resection included trauma (11 patients), neoplasms (62 patients), and chronic pancreatitis (12 patients). Pancreatic leak was defined as drain output of 25 mL/d or more 7 days postoperatively with a drain amylase level of 1000 U/L or more. Pancreatic leak occurred in 10 of 38 patients (26%) undergoing conventional resection with suture ligation of the pancreatic duct or nonreinforced stapled resection vs 2 of 47 patients (4%) undergoing staple resection using Seamguard reinforcement. Multivariate analysis showed that use of Seamguard with the stapler independently decreased the risk for pancreatic fistula after distal pancreatectomy (odds ratio, 0.07; 95% confidence interval, 0.01-0.43; P = .01).
The use of Seamguard is quickly becoming a common adjunct in distal pancreas resections. Our study shows a lower incidence of pancreatic leak after distal pancreatectomy with the use of this staple line–reinforcing product.