Background and aim: Endoscopic stone removal and stenting of pancreatic strictures are the initial treatment for treating chronic pancreatitis-related pain. Surgery is considered when endoscopic interventions fail to improve symptoms. In this meta-analysis, we have compared early surgery versus endoscopic interventions. Methods: The study was performed as per the PRISMA statement. The literature search was conducted on online databases to identify studies that compared endoscopy and surgery for the management of chronic pancreatitis symptoms. Primary outcomes of interest were pain relief, complications, and exocrine/endocrine insufficiency. Secondary outcomes were mean length of stay and mean number of procedures. Pooled odds ratio (OR) was calculated using random-effects model with 95% confidence interval (CI). Results: Of a total of 9880 articles that were screened, three randomized controlled trials and two retrospective studies with 602 patients (71.4% males) were found to be eligible. Endoscopic interventions were performed in 317 patients and 285 patients underwent early surgery. Early surgery provided significantly better pain relief compared to endoscopy (OR 0.46; 95%CI 0.27–0.80; p = 0.01; I2 = 17.65%) and required less number of procedures (Mean difference 1.66; 95%CI 0.9–2.43; p = 0.00; I2 = 96.46%). There was no significant difference in procedure-related complication (OR 0.91; 95%CI 0.51–1.61; p = 0.74; I2 = 38.8%), endocrine (OR 1.18; 95%CI 0.63–2.20; p = 0.61; I2 = 28.24%), or exocrine insufficiency (OR 1.78; 95%CI 0.66–4.79; p = 0.25; I2 = 30.97%) or the length of stay (Mean difference 1.21; 95%CI −7.12 to 4.70; p = 0.69). Conclusion: Compared to endoscopy, early surgery appears to be better in controlling chronic pancreatitis-related pain, with no significant difference in procedure-related complications. However, larger randomized controlled trials are needed to ascertain their efficacy.
- Chronic pancreatitis
- Extracorporeal shockwave lithotripsy
- Pancreatic sphincterotomy
- Pancreatic strictures
ASJC Scopus subject areas