Review article| Volume 91, ISSUE 3, P520-526, March 2020

An updated review on ablative treatment of pancreatic cystic lesions

Published:October 05, 2019DOI:
      Pancreatic cysts are common and often incidentally detected on abdominal imaging. Their prevalence in asymptomatic individuals depends on the screening modality used. The incidence of these lesions increases with age and may be detected in nearly half of elderly patients undergoing high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging. Some, but not all, pancreas cysts have malignant potential. The overall risk is small but induces significant anxiety for the patient. When determining management options, it is important to consider the patient’s age, medical comorbidities, and surgical risks as well as the wishes of the patient. Current strategies include imaging surveillance or surgical resection. Before embarking on cyst surveillance, a clinician must factor in patients’ risk of developing malignancy, their life expectancy, medical comorbidities, and if they are a surgical candidate. Surgery poses significant adverse events and mortality, whereas radiographic surveillance imposes healthcare costs and psychological distress to patients with the looming possibility of malignancy. The development and use of endoscopic ultrasound cyst ablation is a minimally invasive alternative in treating pancreatic cystic lesions. This review focuses on the modalities of ethanol ablation, paclitaxel ablation, and radiofrequency ablation of pancreatic cystic lesions.


      IPMN (intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm), MCNs (mucinous cystic neoplasms), PCL (pancreatic cystic lesion), PNET (pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor), RFA (radiofrequency ablation), SCA (serous cystadenoma)
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