Thoracoscopic Splanchnicectomy

  • Kevin P. Landolfo
  • Henry L. Laws
  • William C. Meyers


The management of pain in patients with chronic abdominal disease remains a difficult clinical challenge, and the pain caused by pancreatic dysfunction, both benign and malignant, is often severe and intractable. Historically, the concept of visceral sensation remained controversial until 1911 when Hearst [1] demonstrated that pain could be induced by balloon distention of the intestinal tract. With the subsequent acceptance of this concept, efforts were directed at defining the nature and location of pain perception in various intra-abdominal viscera [2].


Chronic Pancreatitis Splanchnic Nerve Thoracic Ganglion Balloon Distention Celiac Ganglion 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Hearst AF: On the sensibility of the alimentary canal in health and disease. Lancet 1911, 1:1051.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Ray BS, Neill CL: Abdominal visceral sensation in man. Ann Surg 1947, 126:709–722.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bingham JR, Ingelfinger FJ, Smithwick RH: The effects of sympathectomy on abdominal pain in man. Gastroenterology 1950, 15:18–31.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Mallet-Guy PA, Jeanjean R, Sevvettaz P: Distant results in the treatment of chronic pancreatitis by unilateral splanchnicectomy. Lyon Chir 1945, 40:293–314.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Peet MM: Splanchnic section for hypertension: a preliminary report. Univ Hosp Bull 1935, 1:17–18.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    White TT, Lawinski M, Poland D, Stacher G: Treatment of pancreatitis by left splanchnicectomy and celiac ganglionectomy. Am J Surg 1966, 112:195–199.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Mallet-Guy PA: Late and very late results of resections of the nervous system in the treatment of chronic relapsing pancreatitis. Am J Surg 1983, 145:234–238.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Rienhoff WF, Baker BM: Pancreolithiasis and chronic pancreatitis: preliminary report of a case of apparently successful treatment by transthoracic sympathectomy and vagotomy. JAMA 1947, 134:20–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Smithwick RH: Discussion of paper of A.O. Whipple. Ann Surg 1946, 124:1006.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    De Takats G, Walter LE: The treatment of pancreatic pain by splanchnic nerve section. Surg Gynecol Obstet 1947, 95:742–746.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    McDonough FE, Heffemon EW: Chronic relapsing pancreatitis. Surg Clin North Am 1948, 28:733–740.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Connolly JE, Richards VR: Bilateral splanchnicectomy and lumbodorsal sympathectomy for chronic relapsing pancreatitis. Ann Surg 1950, 131:58–63.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    White JC, Sweet WH, eds.: Pain: Its Mechanism and Neurosurgical Control. Springfield, Il: Charles C. Thomas Publisher; 1955.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Copping J, Willix R, Kraft R: Palliative chemical splanchnicectomy. Arch Surg 1969, 98:418–420.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Gorbitz C, Leavens ME: Alcohol block of the celiac plexus for control of upper abdominal pain caused by cancer and pancreatitis. J Neurosurg 1971, 34:575–579.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Haaga JR, Kori SH, Eastwood DW, Borkowski GP: Improved technique for CT-guided celiac ganglia block. Am J Radiol 1984, 42:1202–1204.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Hegedus V: Relief of pancreatic pain by radiography-guided block. Am J Radiol 1979, 133:1101–1103.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Rack FJ, Elkins CW: Experiences with vagotomy and sympathectomy in the treatment of chronic pancreatitis. Arch Surg 1950, 61:937–943.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Heisy WG, Dohn DF: Splanchnicectomy for the treatment of intractable abdominal pain. Cleve Clin Quart 1967, 34:9–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Hurwitz A, Gurwitz J: Relief of pain in chronic relapsing pancreatitis by unilateral sympathectomy. Arch Surg 1950, 61:372–378.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Sadar ES, Cooperman AM: Bilateral thoracic sympathectomy-splanchnicectomy in the treatment of intractable pain due to pancreatic carcinoma. Cleve Clin Quart 1974, 41:185–188.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    White TT, Lawinski M, Stacher G, et al.: Treatment of pancreatitis by left splanchnicectomy and celiac ganglionectomy. Am J Surg 1966, 112:195–198.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Stone HH, Chauvin EJ: Pancreatic denervation for pain relief in chronic alcohol associated pancreatitis. Br J Surg 1990, 77:303–305.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin P. Landolfo
  • Henry L. Laws
  • William C. Meyers

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations