World J Emerg Surg. 2023 Jan 27;18(1):9. doi: 10.1186/s13017-023-00479-7.
BACKGROUND: A series of randomized controlled trials have investigated the efficacy and safety of different timings of interventions and methods of intervention. However, the optimal treatment strategy is not yet clear.
METHODS: We searched PubMed, EMBASE, ClinicalTrials.gov and the Cochrane Library until November 30, 2022. A systematic review and Bayesian network meta-analysis were performed following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Trials comparing different treatment strategies for necrotizing pancreatitis were included. This study was registered in the Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews (CRD42022364409) to ensure transparency.
RESULTS: We analyzed a total of 10 studies involving 570 patients and 8 treatment strategies. Although no statistically significant differences were identified comparing odds ratios, trends were confirmed by the surface under the cumulative ranking (SUCRA) scores. The interventions with a low rate of mortality were delayed surgery (DS), delayed surgical step-up approach (DSU) and delayed endoscopic step-up approach (DEU), while the interventions with a low rate of major complications were DSU, DEU and DS. According to the clustered ranking plot, DSU performed the best overall in reducing mortality and major complications, while DD performed the worst. Analysis of the secondary endpoints confirmed the superiority of DEU and DSU in terms of individual components of major complications (organ failure, pancreatic fistula, bleeding, and visceral organ or enterocutaneous fistula), exocrine insufficiency, endocrine insufficiency and length of stay. Overall, DSU was superior to other interventions.
CONCLUSION: DSU was the optimal treatment strategy for necrotizing pancreatitis. Drainage alone should be avoided in clinical practice. Any interventions should be postponed for at least 4 weeks if possible. The step-up approach was preferred.