Original article Outcome of gallbladder polyps in patients with primary sclerosing cholangitis

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Background: The American Association for the Study of Liver Disease (AASLD) guideline recommends cholecystectomy for GB polyps of any size in patients with PSC without strong supporting evidence.

Objective: Evaluate the predictors of malignancy and outcomes of PSC patients with GB polyps.

Methods: We identified 86 patients with PSC and GB polyps at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN between January 1, 2000 and August 31, 2009 using a computerized record system. Twenty-six patients were excluded due to indefinite diagnosis or inadequate follow up data.

Results: Of the 2281 patients with PSC, 60 patients (2.6%) were diagnosed as having GB polyps with a median age of 49.8 years; 67% were male. The median follow up from the diagnosis of GB polyps to the last follow-up was 3.5 years. Thirty-one patients (52%) subsequently underwent cholecystectomy and eight of 31 patients (25.8%) developed malignant GB lesions. Low-grade dysplasia of the GB was seen in two (6.4%). Twenty-nine patients without cholecystectomy had a median follow up of 4.8 years and none of them developed a malignant GB lesion during follow-up. By multivariable logistic analysis, the size of GB polyps at baseline was associated with malignant GB lesions or GB dysplasia (OR = 7.0; 95%CI 2.0-25.1).

Conclusions: One third of GB polyps in patients with PSC who underwent cholecystectomy become malignant or developed dysplasia. A GB polyp at first diagnosis of at least 1 cm in size was a good predictor for malignant lesions of GB or GB dysplasia. In PSC patients with comorbidities who had GB polyp size at first diagnosis less than 1 cm, careful monitoring of the progression of GB polyp size over time with periodical assessment by ultrasound may be an option.

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