Pancreas is located behind the stomach and it releases digestive juices and hormones, required for the digestion of food. The digestive juices can be in the form of bicarbonate and enzymes. Enzymes digests proteins and bicarbonates neutralize the stomach acids. Digestive hormones are released in the form of blood sugar controlling glucagon and insulin. Pancreas can get inflamed, to cause pancreatitis.
1. Pancreatitis can be acute and life threatening. In acute cases, the gland becomes inflamed and it swells to causes damage itself as the digestive juices released for breaking down the food particles act on the gland. Acute pancreatitis may be caused once or many times to a patient.
2. In case of chronic pancreatitis, the damage caused to the gland cannot be returned to normal. The patient may suffer from diabetes because of low insulin, nutritional deficiencies caused by mal-absorption. Internal bleeding may cause anaemia and liver problems.
Pancreatic is uncommon in children and it can be found more in men than in women.
1. It is mostly caused by alcohol or gallstones. People, who take high alcohol, are at a high risk. Pancreatitis is very difficult to diagnose and most of the patient seeking treatment reach the chronic stages of pancreatitis.
2. Gallstones can cause blockage of the gall bladder and it blocks the digestive juices from flowing out of the pancreatic duct, and this can cause the juices to be released inside the pancreas. Gallstones pancreatitis is mostly found in women, above the age of fifty years.
3. There can be other causes of pancreatitis such as allergy caused by drugs, chemicals, injury, hereditary, surgery, infections or accumulation of high amount of fat in the body.
1. Pain in abdomen, which starts suddenly to get severe.
2. Pain in the abdomen as if coming from the back.
3. Pain after eating something.
4. Pain increases on lying on the back.
In acute cases, pancreatitis may have following symptoms:
4. Swollen, tender abdomen
8. Confusion, headaches and irritation
9. Low blood pressure in case the patient is bleeding internally
Diagnosis: It is very difficult to diagnose pancreatitis.
1. Blood cell count and blood sugar is tested to find out about the functioning of pancreas.
2. X- Rays and CT scan can be done to find out the complications.
3. Ultrasound helps in indicating the presence of gallstones and informs about the abnormalities or infections in the biliary system.
4. Endoscopic retrograde cholangio-pancreatography is done to diagnose pancreatitis.
Treatment: Some precautions can be taken to prevent the disease such as reduce or stop intake of alcohol and take healthy liquid diet. Pain relievers are given to reduce the pain of the abdomen. Insulin shots are given in case of, diabetes caused by pancreatitis. In case pancreatitis is caused by gallstones, the patient is operated to remove gallstones. Surgery is also done to remove tissues from harming other parts of the body.