Role of EUS for preoperative evaluation of cholangiocarcinoma: A large single-center experience

Mehdi Mohamadnejad, John M. Dewitt, Stuart Sherman, Julia K. Leblanc, Henry A. Pitt, Michael G. House, Kelly J. Jones, Evan L. Fogel, Lee McHenry, James L. Watkins, Gregory A. Cote, Glen A. Lehman, Mohammad A. Al-Haddad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

122 Scopus citations


Background: Accurate preoperative diagnosis and staging of cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) remain difficult. Objective To evaluate the utility of EUS in the diagnosis and preoperative evaluation of CCA. Design Observational study of prospectively collected data. Setting Single tertiary referral hospital in Indianapolis, Indiana. Patients Consecutive patients with CCA from January 2003 through October 2009. Interventions EUS and EUS-guided FNA (EUS-FNA). Main Outcome Measurements Sensitivity of EUS for the detection of a tumor and prediction of unresectability compared with CT and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); sensitivity of EUS-FNA to provide tissue diagnosis, by using surgical pathology as a reference standard. Results A total of 228 patients with biliary strictures undergoing EUS were identified. Of these, 81 (mean age 70 years, 45 men) had CCA. Fifty-one patients (63%) had distal and 30 (37%) had proximal CCA. For those with available imaging, tumor detection was superior with EUS compared with triphasic CT (76 of 81 [94%] vs 23 of 75 [30%], respectively; P < .001). MRI identified the tumor in 11 of 26 patients (42%; P = .07 vs EUS). EUS identified CCA in all 51 (100%) distal and 25 (83%) of 30 proximal tumors (P < .01). EUS-FNA (median, 5 passes; range, 1-12 passes) was performed in 74 patients (91%). The overall sensitivity of EUS-FNA for the diagnosis of CCA was 73% (95% confidence interval, 62%-82%) and was significantly higher in distal compared with proximal CCA (81% vs 59%, respectively; P = .04). Fifteen tumors were definitely unresectable. EUS correctly identified unresectability in 8 of 15 and correctly identified the 38 of 39 patients with resectable tumors (53% sensitivity and 97% specificity for unresectability). CT and/or MRI failed to detect unresectability in 6 of these 8 patients. Limitation Single-center study. Conclusion EUS and EUS-FNA are sensitive for the diagnosis of CCA and very specific in predicting unresectability. The sensitivity of EUS-FNA is significantly higher in distal than in proximal CCA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)71-78
Number of pages8
JournalGastrointestinal endoscopy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Gastroenterology


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