Novel reconstruction of the extrahepatic biliary tree with a biosynthetic absorbable graft

Peter Nau, James Liu, E. Christopher Ellison, Jeffrey W. Hazey, Matthew Henn, Peter Muscarella, Vimal K. Narula, W. Scott Melvin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Objectives: The reference standard technique for the reconstruction of the extrahepatic biliary tree is Roux-en-Y hepaticojejunostomy. This procedure is not without complications and may not be feasible in some patients. This project sought to evaluate a novel approach for repairing common bile duct injuries with a biosynthetic graft. This allows for the reconstruction of the anatomy without necessitating an intestinal bypass. Methods: Study subjects were 11 mongrel hounds. Utilizing an open approach, the common bile duct was transected in each animal. A 1-cm graft of a synthetic bioabsorbable prosthesis was interposed over a 5-Fr pancreatic stent and sewn in place as an interposition tube graft with absorbable sutures. Intraoperative cholangiograms and monthly liver function tests were completed. Animals were killed at 6, 7, 8, 10 and 12 months. Results: The first five animals were killed early in the process of protocol development. One animal developed obstructive symptoms and was killed on postoperative day 14. The next five animals were longterm survivors without evidence of clinically significant graft stenosis. Mean alkaline phosphatase and total bilirubin were normal, at 140 U/l and 0.2 mg/dl, respectively. Histology showed the complete replacement of the graft with native tissue at 6 months. Conclusions: Biliary reconstruction using a synthetic bioabsorbable prosthetic as an interposition tube graft is feasible based on initial results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)573-578
Number of pages6
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • basic science < biliary
  • basic science < liver

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology


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