Diehl et al identified gallstone characteristics associated with acute pancreatitis. The authors are from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, University of Kentucky, and Trinity University (San Antonio).



(1) diameter of smallest gallstone in mm

(2) gallstone shape


Risk Factors for acute gallstone pancreatitis:

(1) at least one gallstone < 5 mm (minimum size < 5 mm)

(2) mulberry-shaped gallstone (spherical with the contact surface area reduced because of the presence of surface grooves)


Microlithiasis was defined as a stone diameter <= 3 mm.


A patient at risk for gallstone pancreatitis should have a cholecystectomy since the risk of watchful waiting is too great.



• I wonder if finding a stone with either characteristic in the common bile duct would be an additional risk factor.


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