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Pancreas Problems Symptoms

Acute Pancreatitis: Symptoms, Treatment, Causes, And Complications

Acute Pancreatitis: Symptoms, Treatment, Causes, And Complications

Acute pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas. It is painful, develops quickly, and it can, in some cases, be fatal. Some mild cases resolve without treatment, but severe, acute pancreatitis can trigger potentially fatal complications. The mortality rate ranges from less than 5 percent to over 30 percent , depending on how severe the condition is and if it has reached other organs beyond the pancreas. Acute pancreatitis is estimated to affect between 4.5 and 35 in every 100,000 individuals per year. However, this figure may not include the many mild cases that resolve without medical evaluation or treatment. Every year, there are 275,000 hospitalizations for acute pancreatitis in the United States. The pancreas is a long, flat gland located behind the stomach in the upper abdomen. It produces digestive enzymes and hormones, which regulate how the body processes glucose, for instance, insulin . The most common cause of pancreatitis is gallstones , but a rise in alcohol misuse is linked to an increase in incidence. Alcohol now accounts for around 30 percent of cases. Acute pancreatitis starts suddenly, but chronic pancreatitis is recurring or persistent. This article will focus on acute pancreatitis. Here are some key points about acute pancreatitis. More detail is in the main article. Pancreatitis is split into acute and chronic types. The pancreas carries out many tasks, including the production of digestive enzymes. Symptoms include pain in the center of the upper abdomen, vomiting, and diarrhea . The most common causes of acute pancreatitis are gallstones and alcohol abuse. Sharp and sudden abdominal pain can be a sign of pancreatitis. Typically, the patient will experience a sudden onset of pain in the center of the upper abdomen, below the breastbone (stern Continue reading >>

5 Warning Signs Your Pancreas Is In Trouble

5 Warning Signs Your Pancreas Is In Trouble

Quick, say the first thing that pops into your head when you read the word "pancreas." If you said "cancer," you're not alone. Most people only think about their pancreas when they hear about pancreatic cancer—which is the deadliest form of cancer in terms of 5-year survival rates. "Part of the reason survival rates are so low is that identifying pancreatic cancer early is difficult," says Andrew Hendifar, MD, codirector of pancreas oncology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. Early detection is also tough when it comes to non-cancer pancreas problems, says Ted Epperly, MD, president of Family Medicine Residency of Idaho. Tucked deep in your abdomen, your pancreas is a long, flat organ that produces enzymes and hormones that aid in digestion. While symptoms of pancreas issues can be persnickety, both Epperly and Hendifar say there are a handful of warning signs that warrant a call to your doctor. Here are 5 of them. (Want to pick up some healthier habits? Sign up to get healthy living tips delivered straight to your inbox!) If you notice your stool is light colored and floating, that's a sign of poor nutrient absorption. (Here are 7 things your poop says about your health.) "The enzymes your pancreas produces help you digest fats in your diet," Hendifar explains. Along with breaking down fats, your pancreas helps your body absorb fat-soluble vitamins like A, E, and K, he says. When pancreatic disease messes with your organ's ability to properly manufacture those enzymes, the result is feces that looks paler and is less dense. You may also notice your poop is oily or greasy. "The toilet water will have a film that looks like oil," Hendifar says. That's the dietary fat your body failed to break down, he explains. If you notice your poop looks funky now and th Continue reading >>

Pancreatitis: Symptoms, Treatment, And Chronic Cases | Everyday Health

Pancreatitis: Symptoms, Treatment, And Chronic Cases | Everyday Health

Pancreatitis occurs when the pancreas's enzymes start digesting pancreatic tissues.This can cause swelling, bleeding, and damage to the pancreas.Gallstones, alcoholism , and certain kinds of medication can causepancreatitis. There are two main types of pancreatitis: acute andchronic. "Pancreatitis" is often used synonymously with "acute pancreatitis," because this form of the disease which appears suddenly and is short lived is the most common. (In this series, the term pancreatitis will refer to acute pancreatitis.) You'll have a physical examination, and your doctor will orderblood tests and imaging tests to confirm whether you have either acute or severepancreatitis. During the physical examination, your doctor may feel your stomach to see whether your muscles are rigid or your stomach is tender. The blood test, which can only point to pancreatitis not diagnose it for certain measures the amount of two digestive enzymes in the pancreas. With the onset of acute pancreatitis, the levels of those enzymes are higher than usual typically more than three times the normal level, according to the National Institutes of Health. ( 1 ) Other blood tests may measure kidney function and white blood cell count. Your doctor may also order the following imaging tests to check for the presence of gallstones, inflammation, and other changes: Magnetic resonancecholangiopancreatography(MRCP) The EUStest involves inserting a lighted tube into your mouth and down into your intestine to check for blockage or damage. The MRCPis a form of MRIin which you are injected with a dye that illuminates the pancreas and surrounding areas. Chronic pancreatitisis diagnosed in the same way. The doctor may order different blood tests, because in chronic pancreatitis,the digestive enzyme levels may appea Continue reading >>

Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis facts About 210,000 cases of acute pancreatitis occur in the US every year. Pancreatitis causes abdominal pain. Pancreatitis can be an acute (short-term) or chronic (long-term) condition. The hallmark symptom of acute pancreatitis is abdominal pain. Other signs and symptoms of acute pancreatitis are: tenderness of the abdomen to touch Diagnosis of pancreatitis is generally with blood and imaging tests. Most cases of acute pancreatitis require hospitalization; however, treatment of chronic pancreatitis may be managed in an outpatient setting. Complications of pancreatitis may include: malnutrition infection pseudocyst formation Pancreatitis can range from a mild, self-limited disease to a condition with life- threatening complications. What's Causing Your Abdominal Pain? Certain persistent changes in stool color are characteristic for specific conditions such as: Pale yellow, greasy, foul-smelling stool: malabsorption of fat due to pancreatic insufficiency, as seen with pancreatitis, pancreatic cancer, cystic fibrosis, celiac disease Black, foul-smelling stool: intestinal bleeding due to ulcers, tumors; Ingestion of iron or bismuth maroon stool: intestinal bleeding due to ulcers, tumors, Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis Clay-colored stool: lack of bile due to blockage of the main bile duct pale yellow, greasy, foul-smelling stool: Pancreatitis is a condition characterized by inflammation of the pancreas. The pancreas is an abdominal gland situated behind the stomach in the upper abdomen. The main function of the pancreas is to secrete hormones and enzymes that help with digestion and regulate blood sugar (glucose) metabolism. The digestive enzymes are released via the pancreatic duct into the small intestine where they are activated to help break down fat Continue reading >>

Digestive Disorders Health Center

Digestive Disorders Health Center

The pancreas is a large gland behind the stomach and next to the small intestine. The pancreas does two main things: It releases powerful digestive enzymes into the small intestine to aid the digestion of food. It releases the hormones insulin and glucagon into the bloodstream. These hormones help the body control how it uses food for energy. Pancreatitis is a disease in which the pancreas becomes inflamed. Pancreatic damage happens when the digestive enzymes are activated before they are released into the small intestine and begin attacking the pancreas. There are two forms of pancreatitis: acute and chronic. Acute pancreatitis. Acute pancreatitis is a sudden inflammation that lasts for a short time. It may range from mild discomfort to a severe, life-threatening illness. Most people with acute pancreatitis recover completely after getting the right treatment. In severe cases, acute pancreatitis can result in bleeding into the gland, serious tissue damage, infection, and cyst formation. Severe pancreatitis can also harm other vital organs such as the heart, lungs, and kidneys. Chronic pancreatitis. Chronic pancreatitis is long-lasting inflammation of the pancreas. It most often happens after an episode of acute pancreatitis. Heavy alcohol drinking is another big cause. Damage to the pancreas from heavy alcohol use may not cause symptoms for many years, but then the person may suddenly develop severe pancreatitis symptoms. Symptoms of acute pancreatitis: Upper abdominal pain that radiates into the back; it may be aggravated by eating, especially foods high in fat. Fever Symptoms of chronic pancreatitis: The symptoms of chronic pancreatitis are similar to those of acute pancreatitis. Patients frequently feel constant pain in the upper abdomen that radiates to the back. I Continue reading >>

8 Symptoms Of Pancreatic Cancer You're Probably Ignoring | Reader's Digest

8 Symptoms Of Pancreatic Cancer You're Probably Ignoring | Reader's Digest

Over 53,000 people are expected to be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2017, and 43,000 will die from it. Symptoms often arent noticeable until the disease is in the advanced stages, but if you notice any of the following pancreatic cancer signs, talk to your doctor. "Jaundice is one of the clearest symptoms of pancreatic cancer," says Christopher DiMaio, MD, a gastroenterologist at The Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. "Often, patients feel fine until one day a friend notices their eyes look yellow, then they go to the doctor and find they have advanced pancreatic cancer." Cancers that start near the head of the pancreas can block the bile duct, preventing bile from reaching the intestines, where it helps break down fats and eventually leaves the body in the stool. This bile builds up and causes jaundice, which is yellowing of the skin or eyes. It can also cause your skin to itch, according to the American Cancer Society . These are other cancer symptoms women should never ignore and cancer signs men should never ignore . Place the tip of your finger on the top of your abdomen, just below the breastbone. Then imagine your finger pointing straight back through your body to the spine. That's a common location that pancreatic cancer patients report feeling pain, says Dr. DiMaio. "The pain is hard to describe, but a dull, internal pain in this area, or radiating around the sides of your abdomen to the back, is a tip-off and you should get it checked out," he says. Cancers that start in the body or tail of the pancreas can press on nearby organs, causing pain. If the cancer spreads to the nerves surrounding the pancreas, this can cause back pain. Here are some more reasons your back might be hurting . If your urine starts to look dark (brown or rust colored), this Continue reading >>

Signs And Symptoms Of Exocrine Pancreatic Cancer

Signs And Symptoms Of Exocrine Pancreatic Cancer

The symptoms of exocrine pancreatic cancers and pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) are often different, so they are described separately. Having one or more of the symptoms below does not mean you have pancreatic cancer. In fact, many of these symptoms are more likely to be caused by other conditions. Still, if you have any of these symptoms, it’s important to have them checked by a doctor so that the cause can be found and treated, if needed. Early pancreatic cancers often do not cause any signs or symptoms. By the time they do cause symptoms, they have often already spread outside the pancreas. Jaundice and related symptoms Jaundice is yellowing of the eyes and skin. Most people with pancreatic cancer (and nearly all people with ampullary cancer) will have jaundice as one of their first symptoms. Jaundice is caused by the buildup of bilirubin, a dark yellow-brown substance made in the liver. Normally, the liver excretes bilirubin as part of a liquid called bile. Bile goes through the common bile duct into the intestines, where it helps break down fats. It eventually leaves the body in the stool. When the common bile duct becomes blocked, bile can’t reach the intestines, and the level of bilirubin in the body builds up. Cancers that start in the head of the pancreas are near the common bile duct. These cancers can press on the duct and cause jaundice while they are still fairly small, which can sometimes lead to these tumors being found at an early stage. But cancers that start in the body or tail of the pancreas don’t press on the duct until they have spread through the pancreas. By this time, the cancer has often spread beyond the pancreas as well. When pancreatic cancer spreads, it often goes to the liver. This can also lead to jaundice. Dark urine: Somet Continue reading >>

Help For Symptoms Of Pancreas Problems And Promoting Pancreas Health

Help For Symptoms Of Pancreas Problems And Promoting Pancreas Health

Select a Topic What is the Pancreas? The pancreas is a large organ approximately six inches long and is a key part of the digestive and endocrine systems. It is located deep within the upper abdomen, surrounded by the stomach, small intestine, liver and spleen. This organ is shaped like a pear, broad at one end and narrow at the other end. It is divided in three sections – the broad end of the pancreas is called the head, the midsection is called the body and the narrow end is called the tail. If pancreas health is compromised a number of serious disorders can occur within the body. Functions of the Pancreas The first function belongs to the exocrine pancreas. The pancreas produces digestive juices and enzymes to help digest fats and proteins. When food has been partially digested by the stomach, it is pushed into the duodenum (the first part of the small intestine). Secreting its enzymes into the duodenum helps to prevent the protein-digesting enzyme known as trypsin from eating the protein-based pancreas or its duct. Pancreatic digestive juices and enzymes are released through a small duct attached to the duodenum to mix with the food. The exocrine pancreas also produces enzymes that break down carbohydrates (amylase) and fats (lipase) as well as sodium bicarbonate which helps to neutralize the stomach acids in food. The second function belongs to the endocrine pancreas. The pancreas produces the hormone insulin together with a variety of other hormones. Insulin helps to control the body’s blood sugar (glucose) levels. It is produced by small groups of pancreatic cells called the Islets of Langerhans, which are also known as the "islet cells" Insulin is secreted when your blood sugar is raised and it causes the muscles and other bodily tissues to take up glucose f Continue reading >>

Pancreatitis Symptoms & Treament | Wake Gastroenterology

Pancreatitis Symptoms & Treament | Wake Gastroenterology

Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas. The pancreas is a large gland behind the stomach and close to the duodenum. The duodenum is the upper part of the small intestine. The pancreas secretes digestive enzymes into the small intestine through a tube called the pancreatic duct. These enzymes help digest fats, proteins, and carbohydrates in food. The pancreas also releases the hormones insulin and glucagon into the bloodstream. These hormones help the body use the glucose it takes from food for energy. Normally, digestive enzymes do not become active until they reach the small intestine, where they begin digesting food. But if these enzymes become active inside the pancreas, they start digesting the pancreas itself. Acute pancreatitis occurs suddenly and lasts for a short period of time and usually resolves. Chronic pancreatitis does not resolve itself and results in a slow destruction of the pancreas. Either form can cause serious complications. In severe cases, bleeding, tissue damage, and infection may occur. Pseudocysts accumulations of fluid and tissue debris may also develop. And enzymes and toxins may enter the bloodstream, injuring the heart, lungs, and kidneys, or other organs. Some people have more than one attack and recover completely after each, but acute pancreatitis can be a severe, life-threatening illness with many complications. About 80,000 cases occur in the United States each year; some 20 percent of them are severe. Acute pancreatitis occurs more often in men than women. Acute pancreatitis is usually caused by gallstones or by drinking too much alcohol, but these arent the only causes. If alcohol use and gallstones are ruled out, other possible causes of pancreatitis should be carefully examined so that appropriate treatment if available c Continue reading >>

Pancreatitis Symptoms, Causes, Diet, And Treatment

Pancreatitis Symptoms, Causes, Diet, And Treatment

Facts about and Definition of Pancreatitis Pancreatitis simply means inflammation of the pancreas. There are two types of pancreatitis, acute and chronic. Causes of acute pancreatitis and chronic pancreatitis are similar; about 80%-90% are caused by alcohol abuse and gallstones (about 35%-45% for each); while the remaining 10%-20% are caused by medications, chemical exposures, trauma, hereditary diseases, infections, surgical procedures, and high fat levels in the blood and genetic abnormalities with pancreas or intestine Symptoms of acute pancreatitis most commonly begins with abdominal pain in the middle or upper left part of the abdomen and abdominal pain may increase after eating or lying flat the back. Other symptoms may include Severe acute pancreatitis symptoms and signs may show skin discoloration around the belly button or the side of the body between the ribs and hip (flank), or small erythematous skin nodules. Necrotizing pancreatitis is a severe form of acute pancreatitis characterized by necrosis in and around the pancreas. Diagnosis of pancreatitis (both acute and chronic) is done similarly. Patient history will be taken, physical exam will be performed, and various tests may be ordered. Although acute pancreatitis should not be treated at home initially, there are steps that can help prevent or reduce symptoms. The major risk factors for pancreatitis are heavy alcohol consumption and a history of gallstones; they cause about 80%-90% of pancreatitis; other factors such as genetics and medications may increase an individual's risk. Treatment of acute pancreatitis is done according to the underlying cause. Most acute cases of pancreatitis are treated in the hospital or the goal is to relieve symptoms in support body functions so that the pancreas can recover Continue reading >>

Common Disorders Of The Pancreas

Common Disorders Of The Pancreas

There are a variety of disorders of the pancreas including acute pancreatitis, chronic pancreatitis, hereditary pancreatitis, and pancreatic cancer. The evaluation of pancreatic diseases can be difficult due to the inaccessibility of the pancreas. There are multiple methods to evaluate the pancreas. Initial tests of the pancreas include a physical examination, which is difficult since the pancreas is deep in the abdomen near the spine. Blood tests are often helpful in determining whether the pancreas is involved in a specific symptom but may be misleading. The best radiographic tests to evaluate the structure of the pancreas include CAT (computed tomography) scan, endoscopic ultrasound, and MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). Tests to evaluate the pancreatic ducts include ERCP (endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography) and MRCP(magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography). There are also instances in which surgical exploration is the only way to confirm the diagnosis of pancreatic disease. Acute Pancreatitis Acute pancreatitis is a sudden attack causing inflammation of the pancreas and is usually associated with severe upper abdominal pain. The pain may be severe and last several days. Other symptoms of acute pancreatitis include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, and fever. In the United States, the most common cause of acute pancreatitis is gallstones. Other causes include chronic alcohol consumption, hereditary conditions, trauma, medications, infections, electrolyte abnormalities, high lipid levels, hormonal abnormalities, or other unknown causes. The treatment is usually supportive with medications showing no benefit. Most patients with acute pancreatitis recover completely. For more information on acute pancreatitis, please visit here. Chronic Pancreatitis Continue reading >>

Symptoms Of Pancreatitis: Pain And Other Complications

Symptoms Of Pancreatitis: Pain And Other Complications

Symptoms of Pancreatitis: Pain and Other Complications The pain of pancreatitis occurs in a specific way and is a key symptom of the condition. Sign Up for Our Digestive Health Newsletter Thanks for signing up! You might also like these other newsletters: Sign up for more FREE Everyday Health newsletters . Pain in the upper abdominal area, usually under the ribs, is the most common symptom of both acute and chronic pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is associated with pain and a handful of other symptoms, some of which can be severe. There are two types of pancreatitis: acute and chronic. Gallstones and alcohol are the two main causes of acute pancreatitis. With chronic pancreatitis, it's been estimated thatup to 55 percent of casesin the United States are due to heavy drinking or alcoholism. ( 1 ) The most common symptom of both acute and chronic pancreatitis is pain in the upper abdominal area , usually under the ribs. This pain: May be mild at first and get worse after eating or drinking May become constant, severe, and last for several days Tends to worsen while lying down on the back and lessen while leaning forward in a sitting position Is not dull or located in the lower abdominal area The abdominal pain may also differ depending on the cause of the pancreatitis. The pain ofgallstonepancreatitis, for instance, is usually sudden, stabbing, and may radiate to the back. The pain of alcoholic pancreatitis, on the other hand, may develop more slowly and be less localized. In addition to abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting are hallmark symptoms of acute pancreatitis. The stress on various systems can also cause those with the condition to appear as ill as they are. They may look pale, sweaty, and in distress. Becausepancreatitiscauses a drop in your digestive enzyme supply, y Continue reading >>

Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis

What is pancreatitis? Pancreatitis is pathologic inflammation of the pancreas. Your pancreas resides behind your stomach. It secretes enzymes that help you digest food and also regulates how your body manages glucose. Pancreatitis can come and go quickly, or it can be a chronic problem. Treatment will depend on whether your pancreatitis is acute or chronic. The onset of acute pancreatitis is often very sudden. The inflammation usually clears up within several days after treatment begins. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), around 210,000 American adults are admitted to the hospital for acute pancreatitis every year. Gallstones are the most common cause of acute pancreatitis. Gallstones are small, solid masses that form from bile. A large enough gallstone can get stuck at the junction where the main pancreatic duct and the common bile duct come together to form another duct called the ampulla of Vater. These ducts empty into the duodenum, the first part of the small intestine. The pancreatic duct carries digestive enzymes from the pancreas. The common bile duct carries bile or other biliary substances from the liver and gallbladder. When a gallstone gets stuck here, it can cause a backup of these substances. This can lead to inflammation in both the common bile duct and pancreas. Chronic pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas that occurs constantly over the long haul. People with chronic pancreatitis can have permanent damage to their pancreas. Scar tissue develops from this long-term inflammation. Extensive scar tissue may cause your pancreas to stop making the normal amounts of digestive enzymes, or glucose-regulating hormones. As a result, you’re likely to have trouble digesting fats (which are needed t Continue reading >>

Pancreatic Cancer Symptoms & Signs

Pancreatic Cancer Symptoms & Signs

Pancreatic cancer is often referred to as a “silent cancer” because it is thought that the early symptoms can be vague and unrecognised. Pancreatic cancer symptoms however can present themselves early in many cases. Here are some of the most common symptoms to look out for: Classic pancreatic cancer symptoms can include: Painless jaundice (yellow skin/eyes, dark urine, itching). Weight loss which is significant and unexplained Abdominal pain or discomfort which is new-onset and significant Other possible symptoms of pancreatic cancer: Pain or discomfort in the upper abdomen which is new, that tends to radiate to the back. This is significant and can be persistent but also intermittent, this pain or discomfort can vary between patients. Back pain Diabetes which is new-onset and not associated with weight gain Vague indigestion (dyspepsia) or abdominal discomfort (not responding to prescribed medication) Loss of appetite Nausea and vomiting Pain when eating Steatorrhea (fatty stools that are often pale and smell foul) Not everyone will have all of these symptoms. For example, those who have a tumour in the body or tail of the pancreas are unlikely to have painless jaundice. All of these symptoms can have other causes, and there is not yet a reliable and easy test for pancreatic cancer. Explanation of the symptoms: Pain or discomfort in the abdomen and upper back Approximately 70 per cent of patients with pancreatic cancer go to the doctor initially due to pain. This pain is often described as beginning in the stomach area and radiating around to the upper back (just above where a woman’s bra strap would be). Generally the reason for the pain is because of the tumour pressing against your abdomen and spine. Jaundice 30% of patients will have yellowing of the skin and Continue reading >>

What's To Know About Chronic Pancreatitis?

What's To Know About Chronic Pancreatitis?

Chronic pancreatitis is a long-term progressive inflammatory disease of the pancreas that leads to permanent breakdown of the structure and function of the pancreas. The pancreas is a gland organ that is located in the abdomen, behind the stomach and below the ribcage. It specializes in producing important enzymes and hormones that help break down and digest foods. It also makes insulin to moderate the levels of sugar in the blood. The most common cause is long-term alcohol abuse - it is thought to account for between 70 and 80 percent of all cases. Chronic pancreatitis results in over 122,000 visits to a doctor and 56,000 hospitalizations annually in the United States. Significantly more men than women are affected. Treatment The following treatments are commonly recommended for chronic pancreatitis. Lifestyle changes People with chronic pancreatitis will need to undergo some lifestyle changes. These will include: Stopping alcohol consumption: Giving up drinking will help prevent further damage to the pancreas. It will also contribute significantly towards relieving the pain. Some people may need professional help to quit alcohol. Stopping tobacco use: Smoking is not a cause of pancreatitis, but it can accelerate the progression of the disease. Pain management Treatment should not only focus on helping ease the pain symptoms, but also depression which is a common consequence of long-term pain. Doctors will usually use a step-by-step approach, in which mild painkillers are prescribed, gradually becoming stronger until pain becomes manageable. Insulin The pancreas may stop producing insulin if the damage is extensive. The individual is likely to have developed diabetes type 1. Regular insulin treatment will become part of the treatment for the rest of the person's life. Continue reading >>

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