Published online Aug 1, 2004. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v10.i15.2272
Revised: February 23, 2004
Accepted: April 9, 2004
Published online: August 1, 2004
AIM: To clarify the effectiveness of plasma exchange by comparing the mortality and morbidity before and after the intervention of plasma exchange.
METHODS: Plasma exchange has been available as an optional therapy for hyperlipidemic pancreatitis since August 1999 in our hospital. The patients were assorted into 2 groups (group I: before August 1999 and group II: after August 1999). Group I consisted of 34 patients (before the availability of plasma exchange). Group II consisted of 60 patients (after the availability of plasma exchange). Twenty patients in group II received plasma exchange after giving their consent. The mortality and morbidity were compared between group I and group II. Furthermore, the patients with severe hyperlipidemic pancreatitis (Ranson’s score ≥ 3) were analyzed separately. The mortality and morbidity were also compared between those receiving plasma exchange (group A) and those who did not receive plasma exchange (group B).
RESULTS: There was no statistical difference in the mortality, systemic and local complications between group I and group II. When the patients with severe hyperlipidemic pancreatitis were analyzed separately, there was no statistical difference between group A and group B.
CONCLUSION: Plasma exchange can not ameliorate the overall mortality or morbidity of hyperlipidemic pancreatitis. The time of plasma exchange might be the critical point. If patients with hyperlipidemic pancreatitis can receive plasma exchange as soon as possible, better result may be predicted. Further study with more cases is needed to clarify the role of plasma exchange in the treatment of hyperlipidemic pancreatitis.