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Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis is an Inflammation process that affects the organ the Pancreas. Often pancreatic enzymes are disturbed or affected.

Under normal circumstances – these enzymes are released into the small bowel for digestion.

When Pancreatitis is involved, these enzymes can be found attacking the pancreas itself.

Most cases are minimal and often subside on their own, however, some cases are very severe and can be seen as life threatening.

Some relief can be seen by simply changing your position – but this is usually temporary.

Two Main Types

1.)  Acute Pancreatitis
2.)  Chronic Pancreatitis

Causes:

–  Alcohol
–  Blockage of a pancreatic duct
–  Gallstones also called Cholelithiasis
–  Infections
–  Medications
–  Trauma
–  Pregnancy
–  Previous surgery to surrounding area
–  others

Medications involved:

–  some diuretics
  L-asparaginase
–  Azathioprine
–  Estrogen
–  Pentamidine
–  Didanosine

Symptoms

–   Abdominal pain
–   Nausea
–   Vomiting
–   Fever
–   Chills
–   Elevated blood pressure

Diagnosis

1.)  CT scan and MRI of abdomen are sometimes helpful

2.)  Amylase and Lipase (pancreatic enzymes) are often elevated.

3.)  These are enzymes produced in pancreas and can “leak” when inflammation is present.

4.)  Under normal circumstances amylase and lipase would not be widely detected in blood.

Treatment

1.)  Hospital admission in some cases

2.)  Pain medications

Morphine

3.)  IV and hydration

4.)  Decrease or stop oral food

5.)  Antibiotics may be necessary in some cases
Floroquinolone
Metronidazole
Imipenem

6.) Surgery