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A Patient's Guide to Acute Pancreatitis

Last updated 3 years ago

The pancreas is an essential part of the digestive system. Not only does it provide the insulin that moves blood glucose from the bloodstream into other cells, but also it breaks down the food you eat into substances that the body can use. Pancreatitis, or inflammation of the pancreas, can disrupt this gland’s important functions and cause permanent damage. Acute pancreatitis requires immediate medical treatment, which patients can find at Largo Medical Center.

Why does pancreatitis occur?

In some individuals diagnosed with pancreatitis, physicians may not be able to determine a specific cause. However, this condition can often arise from an existing medical condition. An infection of the pancreas or damage to it can lead to gland inflammation. The development of gallstones can also cause pancreatitis. The excessive ingestion of alcoholic beverages may increase the risk of pancreatitis as well.

How does pancreatitis present?

Discomfort in the abdominal region is one of the most common signs of pancreatitis. Intense abdominal pain demands rapid medical care, so individuals who experience this symptom should seek professional attention as soon as possible. Because of inflammation, pancreatitis may also make the stomach area tender to the touch. This condition also interferes with digestion, so if an individual suffers from pancreatitis for an extended period of time, he may suffer weight loss. Feeling sick to one’s stomach can also indicate the presence of this condition.

What can doctors do to treat pancreatitis?

Treatment for pancreatitis typically focuses on improving patient comfort and restoring pancreas function. The cessation of alcohol usage is one way to alleviate pancreatitis symptoms. Reducing the consumption of high-fat foods can also ease pancreatitis pain and gland dysfunction. Some pancreatitis sufferers may also have to undergo surgery if they have persistent or severe symptoms. The removal of the gallbladder can prove beneficial if gallstones are the cause of the condition. The excision of damaged gland tissue may also be necessary to restore pancreas function.

Don’t wait for your abdominal pain to disappear on its own. Seek emergency treatment for your symptoms at Largo Medical Center. For more information on our ER services for the greater Pinellas County community, call (727) 470-6826.


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Disclaimer: The materials provided are intended for informational purposes only. You should contact your doctor for medical advice. Use of and access to this website or other materials do not create a physician-patient relationship. The opinions expressed through this website are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the hospital, medical staff, or any individual physician or other healthcare professional.
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