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Is intravenous cholangiography an alternative to the routine per-operative cholangiogram?
  1. S. P. Huddy,
  2. J. A. Southam
  1. Epsom District Hospital, Surrey, UK.


    Ultrasonography, although an accurate method of detecting stones within the gall bladder, is unreliable for the detection of bile duct stones for which per-operative cholangiography remains the standard investigation. Fifty seven patients undergoing elective cholecystectomy had both a pre-operative intravenous cholangiogram and per-operative cholangiography. The pre-operative investigation is shown to be at least as effective in the detection of common bile duct stones and only missed a duct stone in one patient. The substitution of pre-operative intravenous cholangiography for routine per-operative cholangiography would result in a significant reduction in operating time, may provide advance knowledge on the biliary anatomy and would allow advance planning of the likely procedure. It is suggested that pre-operative intravenous cholangiography, carried out on the day of admission, should be considered as a preferred alternative investigation to per-operative cholangiography.

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