Background: Comparative outcomes after endoscopic drainage of specific types of symptomatic pancreatic fluid collections, defined by using standardized nomenclature, have not been described. This study sought to determine outcome differences after attempted endoscopic drainage of pancreatic fluid collections classified as pancreatic necrosis, acute pseudocyst, and chronic pseudocyst. Methods: Outcomes were retrospectively analyzed for consecutive patients with symptoms caused by pancreatic fluid collections referred for endoscopic transmural and/or transpapillary drainage. Results: Complete endoscopic resolution was achieved in 113 of 138 patients (82%). Resolution was significantly more frequent in patients with chronic pseudocysts (59/64, 92%) than acute pseudocysts (23/31, 74%, p = 0.02) or necrosis (31/43, 72%, p = 0.006). Complications were more common in patients with necrosis (16/43, 37%) than chronic (11/64, 17%, p = 0.02) or acute pseudocysts (6/31, 19%, p = NS). At a median follow-up of 2.1 years after successful endoscopic treatment (resolution), pancreatic fluid collections had recurred in 18 of 113 patients (16%). Recurrences developed more commonly in patients with necrosis (9/31, 29%) than acute pseudocysts (2/23, 9%, p = 0.07) or chronic pseudocysts (7/59, 12%, p = 0.047). Conclusions: Successful resolution of pancreatic fluid collections may be achieved endoscopically by an experienced therapeutic endoscopist. Outcomes differ depending on the type of pancreatic fluid collection drained. Further studies of endoscopic drainage of pancreatic fluid collections must use defined terminology to allow meaningful comparisons. © 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.