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Chronic Pancreatitis
(GS007)

Introduction


Chronic pancreatitis is an inflammatory disease in which progressive and irreversible structural changes to the pancreas result in a permanent impairment of both the exocrine and endocrine functions.

As the pancreas become progressively more scarred, some persons develop diabetes and/or the inability to digest foods, especially fats. Because of the lack of normal pancreatic enzymes, digestion of food and the production of wastes are adversely affected. Abdominal pain is common, especially after eating. Stools become bulky, greasy, foul smelling and tend to float in the water because of their high fat content - a condition known as steatorrhea. The formation of stones in the pancreas is also common.

The treatment of chronic pancreatitis depends on 4 factors: the cause of the pancreatitis, the portion of the pancreas involved, the presence or absence os symptoms, and the size of the pancreatic duct.

When symptoms are mild or absent ("silent pancreatitis") no treatment is indicated. For persons with disabling symptoms, however, treatment is indicated. Treatment may consist of medications and possibly surgery.

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The Medifocus Guide on Chronic Pancreatitis provides answers to the following important questions and medical issues:


What Your Doctor Reads:


This MediFocus Guide contains an extensive listing of citations and abstracts of recent journal articles that have been published about this condition in trustworthy medical journals. This is the same type of information that is available to physicians and other health care professionals. A partial selection of journal articles that are abstracted in this MediFocus Guide includes:


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