• Achieving reduced mortality rates in patients with necrotizing pancreatitis and pancreatic abscess is possible by employing a comprehensive management plan. Components of the plan include (1) rapid evaluation and assessment of the degree of physiologic and anatomic derangement, the latter by the prompt use of vascular enhanced computed tomographic scan; (2) adequate fluid resuscitation determined by early institution of advanced hemodynamic monitoring; (3) attempts to identify and document septic foci via computed tomography–guided percutaneous aspiration; and (4) aggressive surgical débridement. Close adherence to these policies allowed us to keep mortality in this seriously ill group of patients to 14%. Most deaths occurred in patients who were referred to this service late in the course of their disease. The Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Enquiry (APACHE) II severity of illness index applied at the time of admission proved an accurate predictor of mortality. A score of 25 or greater was highly predictive of death, and a lesser score, of survival.
(Arch Surg. 1990;125:1269-1275)