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Context Pancreatic ductal calculi are most often associated with chronic pancreatitis. Radiological features of chronic pancreatitis are readily evident in the presence of these calculi. However, acute pancreatitis due to a solitary main pancreatic ductal calculus of biliary origin is rare. Case report A 59-year-old man presented with a first episode of acute pancreatitis. Contrast enhanced computerized tomography (CT) scan and endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) revealed a calculus in the main pancreatic duct in the head of the pancreas causing acute pancreatitis. There were no features suggestive of chronic pancreatitis on CT scanning. The episode acute pancreatitis was managed conservatively. ERCP extraction of the calculus failed as the stone was impacted in the main pancreatic duct resulting in severe acute pancreatitis. Once this resolved, a transduodenal exploration and extraction of the pancreatic ductal calculus was performed successfully. Crystallographic analysis revealed the composition of the calculus was different to that seen in chronic pancreatitis, but more in keeping with a calculus of biliary origin. This could be explained by migration of the biliary calculus via the common channel into the main pancreatic duct. Following the operation the patient made an uneventful recovery and was well at two-year follow up. Conclusion Acute pancreatitis due to a solitary main pancreatic ductal calculus of biliary origin is rare. Failing endoscopic extraction, transduodenal exploration and extraction is a safe option after resolution of acute pancreatitis.
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Author(s): Krishna V Menon Ramakrishna Prasad Chowdary Chaparala Rafiuddin Patel Pierre J Guillou James Ahsley Guthrie Mervyn Huw Davies