Percutaneous Cholecystostomy: Does Transhepatic Puncture Preclude a Transperitoneal Catheter Route?

Albert A Nemcek Jr*, Joseph E. Bernstein, Robert L Vogelzang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Percutaneous cholecystostomy is now commonly performed for the diagnosis and treatment of gallbladder and biliary disorders. The optimal method and route of percutaneous cholecystostomy catheter placement, however, remain controversial and may depend on the indication for the procedure. The ability to predict traversal of the extraperitoneal plane of fixation (“bare area”) between the liver and gallbladder with a transhepatic approach was investigated. With sonographic guidance, 21 transhepatic catheterizations were attempted: 19 in cadavers and two in patients who subsequently underwent cholecystectomy. In all cases, 8-F or 5-F self-retaining catheters were used. At autopsy or surgery, the catheter course and gallbladder puncture site were evaluated. Of 21 punctures, 19 (90%) were transhepatic and two (10%) were transperitoneal. Among the 19 transhepatic punctures, eight catheters (42%) traversed the bare area, while 11 (58%) entered the free gallbladder wall adjacent to the serosal attachment. There were four instances of guide-wire dislodgment during catheter placement; all occurred following puncture of the free wall of the gallbladder. No guide-wire dislodgment occurred when the bare area was traversed. Transhepatic gallbladder puncture does not prevent puncture of the free gallbladder surface. However, the liver and bare area do seem to provide guide-wire stability during catheter placement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)543-547
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Vascular and Interventional Radiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1991


  • Cholecystitis, 762.285
  • Gallbladder, calculi, 762.289
  • Gallbladder, interventional procedure, 762.1228
  • Gallbladder, US studies, 762.12986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Percutaneous Cholecystostomy: Does Transhepatic Puncture Preclude a Transperitoneal Catheter Route?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this