Objective: External lymphatic fistula or chyloperitoneum after intra-abdominal lymphadenectomy may present challenging problems. In the absence of definite guidelines the choice of treatment is often empirical, with unpredictable effectiveness, and the reporting of new cases may broaden the available experience. Methods: We describe two cases. One patient had high-output external fistula (1300 mL/d) after para-aortic lymphadenectomy for metastatic lymph nodes. The fistula became fully evident at postoperative day 4, with resumption of an oral diet, oil the basis of a 1300-mL/d output of white milky fluid from an abdominal drainage. Oral feeding was interrupted and total parenteral nutrition was started: this was transiently associated with octreotide administration, subsequently replaced by somatostatin. The second patient had a low-output fistula (350 mL/d) after liver resection and lymphadenectomy for cholangiocarcinoma and underwent treatment with total parenteral nutrition and somatostatin. Results: In the first case the lymphatic fistula healed ill just less than 3 wk, with the patient constantly remaining in very good condition, without secondary complications. In the second case the low-output fistula healed more rapidly. Conclusion: Interruption of oral feeding with total parenteral nutrition and continuous somatostatin infusion was an effective treatment in both patients with all intra-abdominal lymphatic leak.
- Intra-abdominal lymphadenectomy
- Lymphatic fistula
- Medium chain triglycerides
- Parenteral nutrition