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Argon Plasma Coagulation With Cholangioscopy as Additional Treatment for Residual Ampullary Tumor in a Young Familial Adenomatous Polyposis Patient

Cho, Hourin MD1; Yamada, Masayoshi MD, PhD1; Tanabe, Noriko PhD, CGC2; Yoshida, Teruhiko MD, PhD2; Sugano, Kokichi MD, PhD2; Hashimoto, Taiki MD, PhD3; Hijioka, Susumu MD, PhD4

doi: 10.14309/crj.0000000000000202

1Endoscopy Division, National Cancer Center Hospital, Tokyo, Japan

2Genetic Medicine and Service, National Cancer Center Hospital, Tokyo, Japan

3Division of Pathology and Clinical Laboratories, National Cancer Center Hospital, Tokyo, Japan

4Division of Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Oncology, National Cancer Center Hospital, Tokyo, Japan

Correspondence: Masayoshi Yamada, MD, PhD, Endoscopy Division, National Cancer Center Hospital, 5-1-1, Tsukiji, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 104-0045, Japan (

Received April 08, 2019

Accepted July 23, 2019

Online date: August 27, 2019

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives License 4.0 (CCBY-NC-ND), where it is permissible to download and share the work provided it is properly cited. The work cannot be changed in any way or used commercially without permission from the journal.

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A 22-year-old woman affected by familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) was endoscopically diagnosed with a 10-mm ampullary tumor, which was partially accompanied by a reddish depression (Figure 1). Her mother carried a germline APC mutation (NM000038.5:c.1381G>T/p.E461X). Because intraductal involvement was not observed with endoscopic ultrasonography, we conducted an endoscopic papillectomy (EP). Histologically, the tumor was a tubular adenoma with high-grade dysplasia extending to the common channel and was close to the resection margin (Figure 2). Three weeks later, a residual tumor was detected on re-examination (Figure 3). We selected argon plasma coagulation (APC) for additional treatment because of the invasiveness of surgery. Cholangioscopy (SpyGlass DS; Boston Scientific, Marlborough, MA) was performed to confirm that the tumor did not superficially extend to the inferior bile duct because coagulation is generally feasible only downstream of the sphincter of Oddi. Subsequently, APC was conducted from the ampullary orifice to the common channel. Cholangioscopy was also useful to ensure adequate ablation in this case by direct observation of the lumen. Actually, APC was repeated after initial ablation because cholangioscopy revealed a partially unburned area. We could confirm sufficient ablation after the second procedure (Video 1; watch the video at No recurrence was seen for 8 months after APC.

Figure 1

Figure 1

Figure 2

Figure 2

Figure 3

Figure 3

Over 50% of patients with FAP develop ampullary tumors throughout their lifetime.1 The management of ampullary tumor is important because of its malignant potential.2 EP was recently performed as an alternative to surgery.3 Because endoscopy is less invasive, this approach might be beneficial for patients with FAP who would otherwise require several surgeries for multiple malignancies. However, the effectiveness of EP is controversial because of recurrence risk. APC is used as an additional treatment for recurrent or residual lesion after EP.4 APC is an option for residual ampullary lesions after EP when surgery is considered excessive. Cholangioscopy is reportedly helpful in ruling out intraductal superficial extension of the tumor although available data are limited.5 Cholangioscopy may assist in precise diagnosis of tumor extent and ensure successful treatment of ampullary tumors.

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Author contributions: H. Cho wrote the manuscript. M. Yamada, N. Tanabe, T. Yoshida, and K. Sugano interpreted the genetic analysis. T. Hashimoto provided the pathological images. M. Yamada, T. Hashimoto, and S. Hijioka edited the manuscript. M. Yamada is the article guarantor.

Financial disclosure: This article is supported by AMED under Grant Number 17ck0106271h0001.

Informed consent was obtained for this case report.

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We thank Ms. Mineko Ushiama for her skillful technical assistance. We also thank Marla Brunker, from Edanz Group (, for editing a draft of this manuscript.

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5. Seewald S, Omar S, Soehendra N. Endoscopic resection of tumors of the ampulla of vater: How far up and how deep down can we go? Gastrointest Endosc. 2006;63:789–91.

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© 2019 The Author(s). Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. on behalf of The American College of Gastroenterology.