Percutaneous transhepatic electrohydraulic lithotripsy for the treatment of difficult bile stones

Anna Maria Ierardi, Giovanni Maria Rodà, Letizia Di Meglio, Giuseppe Pellegrino, Paolo Cantù, Daniele Dondossola, Giorgio Rossi, Gianpaolo Carrafiello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To evaluate the efficacy and safety of percutaneous transhepatic lithotripsy (PTL) using an electro-hydraulic (EH) system for difficult bile stones. Methods: We retrospectively evaluated two patients with recurrent cholangitis, jaundice and fever for the presence of difficult bile stones, inaccessible by an endoscopic approach, treated with PTL. Both procedures were conducted using the same protocol, with two different accesses. The treatments were performed using a 10 Fr flexible choledoscopy SpyGlass DS™ for visualization and an EH system for lithotripsy. Results: Technical success, clinical success and complications were evaluated. The two procedures were successfully concluded in both patients without any residual stones in the biliary tree. For both patients, a short follow-up period of six months was available, during which they remained asymptomatic. Neither major nor minor complications were registered. Conclusion: PTL was determined to be an effective and safe technique. This procedure allows a direct visualization of the stone, reducing fluoroscopy time and permitting a less invasive and less traumatic method for the percutaneous management of difficult bile stones. Advances in knowledge: The direct visualization, the high quality of the digital view, the adequate length of the device and the less traumatic approach of EH systems represent advantages compared with other available technologies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1372
JournalJournal of Clinical Medicine
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2021


  • Biliary stone
  • Cholangiography
  • Electrohydraulic lithotripsy
  • Percutaneous chole-doscopy
  • Percutaneous lithotripsy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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