Table of Contents Author Guidelines Submit a Manuscript
Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology
Volume 12, Issue 5, Pages 333-337

Hypertensive Pancreatic Sphincter

Glen A Lehman and Stuart Sherman

Departments of Medicine and Radiology, Indiana University Medical Center, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Copyright © 1998 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Major papilla pancreatic sphincter dysfunction, a variant of sphincter of Oddi dysfunction, causes pancreatitis or pancreatic-type pain. Endoscopic manometry as performed at endoscopic retrograde cholangiography is the most commonly used method to identify sphincter dysfunction. Noninvasive testing, such as secretin-stimulated ultrasound analysis of duct diameter, is less reliable and of relatively low sensitivity. Two-thirds of patients with sphincter of Oddi dysfunction have elevated pancreatic basal sphincter pressure. Patients with suspected or documented sphincter of Oddi dysfunction may respond to biliary sphincterotomy alone, but warrant evaluation of their pancreatic sphincter if symptoms persist after therapy. Whether such pancreatic and biliary sphincters should be treated at the first treatment session is controversial. Pancreatic sphincterotomy is associated with a complication rate very similar to that of biliary sphincterotomy except that the pancreatitis rate is two- to fourfold higher. Prophylactic pancreatic stenting diminishes such pancreatitis by approximately 50%.