Background: The Japanese Society of Hepato-Biliary-Pancreatic Surgery launched the clinical practice guidelines for the management of biliary tract cancers (cholangiocarcinoma, gallbladder cancer, and ampullary cancer) in 2007, then published the 2nd version in 2014.
Methods: In this 3rd version, clinical questions (CQs) were proposed on six topics. The recommendation, grade for recommendation, and statement for each CQ were discussed and finalized by an evidence-based approach. Recommendations were graded as Grade 1 (strong) or Grade 2 (weak) according to the concepts of the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation (GRADE) system.
Results: The 31 CQs covered the six topics: (a) prophylactic treatment, (b) diagnosis, (c) biliary drainage, (d) surgical treatment, (e) chemotherapy, and (f) radiation therapy. In the 31 CQs, 14 recommendations were rated strong and 14 recommendations weak. The remaining three CQs had no recommendation. Each CQ includes a statement of how the recommendations were graded.
Conclusions: This latest guideline provides recommendations for important clinical aspects based on evidence. Future collaboration with the cancer registry will be key for assessing the guidelines and establishing new evidence.