Chronic Pancreatitis: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

Chronic Pancreatitis: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

What is Chronic Pancreatitis? Chronic (long-term) Pancreatitis constitutes undeviating inflammation of your pancreas that impairs your system’s ability to digest food properly and regulate the blood sugar level in your body. Although acute, short-term pancreatitis often gets cured through conservative treatment; chronic pancreatitis seldom gets permanently cured. As a matter of fact, the damage caused

cronic_pancreatitis

What is Chronic Pancreatitis?

Chronic (long-term) Pancreatitis constitutes undeviating inflammation of your pancreas that impairs your system’s ability to digest food properly and regulate the blood sugar level in your body. Although acute, short-term pancreatitis often gets cured through conservative treatment; chronic pancreatitis seldom gets permanently cured. As a matter of fact, the damage caused due to high degree of alcoholism and other causes over extended period of time leaves so much ill effect on the organ that no line of ethical treatment can provide enduring relief. However, acute abdominal pain and secondary symptoms can be managed through medication and other means to some extent.

 

What are the symptoms of chronic pancreatitis?

Symptoms are usually absent in the initial stage, which, however, occur as outlined below as the ailment progresses.

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Upper abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Pale, yellowish, sticky stool
  • Undue fatigue and too much thirst
  • Inexplicable weight loss

However, as the disease progresses further, more alarming symptoms begin to appear that include:

  • Typical yellowish discoloration in the eyes and the skin indicating onset of Jaundice
  • Presence of pancreatic fluid in the abdomen
  • Internal bleeding
  • Intestinal blockage
  • Unrelenting abdominal pain

 

What causes chronic pancreatitis?

Although there could be numerous self-induced as well as inherited causes behind the onset of chronic pancreatitis in a person’s life, the commonest of all is alcohol abuse. Medical studies reveal that more than 70% of people affected by chronic pancreatitis have a long history of excessive alcohol consumption. However, some of the other causes that are also there that are listed below:

  • Blockage of the pancreatic duct either by gallstones or pancreatic stones
  • Abdominal surgery
  • High calcium levels in blood (hypercalcemia), which may have been caused by over-active parathyroid gland (hyperparathyroidism)/li>
  • High triglyceride level in blood (hypertriglyceridemia)
  • Chronic infection that remained untreated
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • A
  • utoimmune disease
  • Excessive cigarette smoking
  • Family history of pancreatitis
  • Incredible, yet true – ERCP may lead to chronic pancreatitis. Wonder of all wonders – sometimes no cause is found at all!

 

How chronic pancreatitis is diagnosed?

Chronic Pancreatitis is not only difficult to treat but difficult to diagnose too. For instance, blood tests that normally reveal causes related to a lot of maladies, proves to be of little value in diagnosing chronic pancreatitis, at least during the early stages of this deadly disease. However, blood tests do reveal the level of pancreatic enzyme in your blood. Nevertheless, some of the following tests are conducted to obtain more definite information, while imaging test prove more helpful in diagnosing chronic pancreatitis.

  • X-rays
  • Ultrasound
  • CT scans
  • MRI scans

In order to obtain conclusive evidence of the extent of damage caused to your pancreas, doctors (gastroenterologists) also go for endoscopic ultrasound. During the procedure, the doctor inserts a long, flexible tube in your mouth, down through your stomach right up to the small intestine. The tube contains an ultrasonic probe that emits sound waves that create detailed images of your pancreas on a monitor attached to it.

 

What are the modes of Treatment for chronic pancreatitis?

To be honest about it, there isn’t much in the medical world to cure chronic pancreatitis, because the pancreas, like the liver, once damaged, cannot be recovered back to its original condition. However, medical help is available to manage the symptoms by way of medication, endoscopic therapies and/or surgery.

Medications that are often prescribed to manage the symptoms include:

  • Pain management medications to suppress agonizing abdominal pain
  • Supplementary digestive enzymes if your enzyme levels are found much too meager for digesting food properly
  • Insulin if you become diabetic
  • Steroids, if you happen to develop autoimmune pancreatitis

Endoscopic treatment of chronic pancreatitis has currently drawn benefits from endoscopic procedures earlier practiced for the main bile duct. While endotherapy is widely acclaimed as the most accepted alternative to surgery, cyst drainage procedure today presents the largest step forward in that non-surgical approach, regardless of whether direct (through stomach or duodenum) or indirect through the papilla in the duodenum. Pancreatic duct drainage, associated with stone clearance is also feasible, while the procedure gives similar results to surgery with lower morbidity.

Surgery, though not indicated for all, becomes inevitable for people who cannot endure excruciating abdominal pain that do not respond to pain killing drugs. The only alternative then entails surgical removal of part of the organ.

 

Postscript:

People suffering from chronic pancreatitis should stay away from alcohol, even if hooch hasn’t been responsible for their dreaded illness, because it will exacerbate their sickness to a great extent. They should also refrain from smoking as it would increase their risk of developing pancreatic cancer.

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Shiv kumar Thakur
Shiv kumar Thakur
2022-01-09
Dr. Vijay rai is the best doctor.
PRANAB BARIK
PRANAB BARIK
2022-01-09
Dr, rai is the best person , the best place to visit,
Prabir Das
Prabir Das
2022-01-09
Dr Rai is the best doctor we have come across but reception staffs is poor,
saurwita brahma
saurwita brahma
2021-12-31
Good place. Safe and secured. Good treatment. Doctor is deft and experienced. All other staff are cooperative and supportive
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Prodip kumar Majumder
2021-12-30
Satisfied
Sanjiv Singh
Sanjiv Singh
2021-12-30
Very good clinic for all stomach issues under the supervision of one of the best doctor and excellent staff
Rajeev Singh
Rajeev Singh
2021-12-29
Visiting a clinic is not a good feeling but thanks to Dr Vijay Rai and Monica Rai mai it is a releiving experience due to satisfactory treatment and awesome service, kudos to Live Gastro and blessings
THERESA MENDES
THERESA MENDES
2021-12-26
To those of you who may have a gastric issue and want a masterclass Gastroenterologist who builds excellent rapport with his patients, you could do well to meet Dr Vijay Kumar Rai of Liv-Gastro. Dr Vijay Kr Rai is hands down one of Kolkata’s best Gastroenterologists. His presentation of self, decorum, services and treatment processes are definitely top notch. Undoubtedly he represents one of the best health care professionals in his field. Dr. Vijay Kr. Rai’s newest venture Liv-Gastro is testimony of his hard work, grit, innovative ideas and determination to bring the best into his arena of practice; in order to achieve maximum treatment options thereby leading to positive outcomes. He has worked relentlessly with steadfast intent and passion to build and expand on his ideas and Liv Gastro is evidence of all that and more. A tour of the campus and floors reveal pristine, cheerful, brightly lit, consultation rooms, diagnostic laboratories, examination rooms, Dr’s clinics, waiting rooms and reception. The warm decor where detailed attention has been given to ensure a patient friendly ambience and the kind, courteous and graceful staff all add to a cheerful exuberance. Some of the services offered are: 1.Day care 2. ERCP 3.EUS 4.Capsule Endoscopy 5. Manometry 6. Fibroscan Dr Vijay Kumar Rai is a very supportive Dr who takes his patients seriously putting their needs first. He has a well rounded knowledge and expertise in his area of practice and inspires confidence. As a patient I was always sure of quality management of my condition and his ability to zero in on the problem is truly amazing. His persistence in dealing with my health issues has been accurate and he has seen me right through to recovery refusing to give in. I could not ask for more. It’s great to find a Dr who combines care and concern along with the prescription which always leaves one with a “feel good”feeling. I do not hesitate to recommend Dr. Vijay Kumar Rai and the team at Liv Gastro to friends and wider circles.