Eosinophilic cholangitis and cholangiopathy: a sheep in wolves clothing.

Research paper by Catherine C Nashed, Sujit Vijay SV Sakpal, Victoria V Shusharina, Ronald Scott RS Chamberlain

Indexed on: 16 Nov '10Published on: 16 Nov '10Published in: HPB surgery : a world journal of hepatic, pancreatic and biliary surgery


Eosinophilic cholangitis (EC) is a rare benign disorder of the biliary tract which can cause biliary obstruction. Similar to other disease processes involving the bile ducts, this disorder can pose a difficult diagnostic challenge as it can mimic cholangiocarcinoma.A systematic search of the scientific literature was carried out using PubMed to access all publications related to EC. Search keywords that were utilized included "eosinophilic cholangitis," "etiology," "treatment," and "obstructive jaundice." Results. Twenty-three cases of EC have been reported. Nineteen patients (82.6%) who presented with EC remain disease-free; 15 of these 19 patients (78.9%) with followup time remain disease-free at a mean of 9.7 months (range, 2-24 months).EC is a rare form of biliary obstruction which can masquerade as a malignancy. Unlike cholangiocarcinoma, EC occurs more commonly in younger patients and in men. Most patients will require surgical treatment.