The pancreas is located in the upper abdomen, behind the stomach, approximately at the level of 1-2 lumbar vertebra. Often, people who have pain in the epigastric region and are not aware of the signs of pancreatic disease, blame the illness for gastritis, duodenitis, or osteochondrosis. Experts are sounding the alarm, as the number of people with chronic pancreatitis and associated secretory insufficiency is constantly increasing from year to year.
A little bit about the pancreas
The main role of this body is the production of enzymes and hormones. Together with pancreatic juice, enzymes (trypsin, chymotrypsin, amylase and lipase) enter the duodenum, where they take part in the processes of further digestion of food.
With insufficient production of secretions or violation of the outflow of pancreatic juice, food does not completely break down, especially for proteins and fats. Also affected are the processes of absorption of nutrients. Poorly processed food lump transit passes through the intestines, resulting in an increase in the number of feces.
The hormones produced by the pancreas are insulin, glucagon and lipocaine. In diseases of the pancreas, they cease to be produced in sufficient quantities, which can lead to diabetes or lipomatosis of the gland itself.
Most often – it is pain in the epigastric region, which tend to increase. The pain can be shingles and give in the lumbar region, the left shoulder blade, the spine. Characterized by increased skin sensitivity. Often the pathology of the pancreas is confused with spinal osteochondrosis, urolithiasis, heart disease, cholecystitis and appendicitis.
Along with the soreness, signs of insufficient secretory activity of the organ are added:
- Fat stools, which is poorly washed off the surface of the toilet. Increasing the amount of fat in the feces is associated with lipase deficiency – an enzyme that does not have “doublers” in the body. The main function of lipase is disturbed – the breakdown of fats in the presence of components of bile.
- A mushy, abundant stool that stands out 4-5 times a day. Fecal masses are often gray.
- Bloating and colic.
- Nausea and heaviness in the stomach, especially after taking fatty and smoked food.
- Weight loss that occurs due to poor absorption of nutrients. Appetite can be maintained in the initial stages.
Helps to identify pathology study coprogram. A large amount of neutral fat (steatorrhea) is found in the feces, as well as undigested grains of starch and muscle (meat) fibers.
Poor quality of pancreatic juice is an obstacle to the absorption of fat and some vitamins, therefore, after some time, signs of vitamin deficiency join. Hypovitaminosis D is manifested in the propensity to fractures of bones, convulsive contractions of muscles. Vitamin A deficiency – in dry skin, visual impairment; hypovitaminosis K is characterized by poor blood clotting.
Due to poor protein breakdown, B12 hypovitaminosis develops, which can lead to a serious disease – pernicious anemia.
These symptoms appear in the following diseases:
- acute inflammation of the gland, acute pancreatitis;
- chronic pancreatitis;
- cystic fibrosis;
- lipomatosis and gland fibrosis;
- diseases of the small intestine.
Symptoms of Pancreatitis
If there is acute inflammation – pancreatitis, the pain symptom is especially acute. Often, the patient can not lie on his left side, and takes a forced position – sitting, bent forward. The pain is localized in the epigastric region, on the left side of the abdomen, is shingles. Later joined vomiting, not bringing relief. Emetic masses can be sour contents, occasionally with an admixture of blood or bile. Often there is an increased temperature.
On palpation of the abdomen, pain is found in its left part, slightly above the navel. In order not to confuse pancreatitis with osteochondrosis, fingers should feel the spine. With pancreatitis, it will be painless.
According to studies, most cases of pancreatitis occur after taking large doses of alcohol (70%). And only in 10% of episodes, a pancreatic lesion occurs as a result of diseases – cholelithiasis, tumor, bacterial or viral infection, chronic lesions of the digestive tract, autoimmune disorders. In 20% of the cause of pathology can not be identified.
Repeated acute pancreatitis translate the disease into a chronic form. Gradual replacement of glandular scar tissue occurs, and this can lead to a violation of its endocrinological function and the development of diabetes.
What to do with acute or chronic pancreatitis
If you have acute pancreatitis, or exacerbation of chronic pancreatitis, then you need urgent hospitalization, you can not hesitate, as this can lead to serious consequences. If pancreatitis or exacerbation of pancreatitis occurs, you must call an ambulance or seek medical help.
During periods of remission of chronic pancreatitis, you need to completely abandon the use of alcohol and comply with the prescribed correct diet. People with pancreatitis are shown to have a diet with limited fats, and vice versa with a high content of proteins (meat, fish, cottage cheese), it is necessary to exclude spicy foods and foods with coarse fiber (apples, cabbage, orange).
Pancreatic Disease Treatment
It is conducted depending on the severity and severity of the process and on the type of the disease. The treatment is carried out by the doctor, after the final diagnosis. In no case of coma do not self-medicate, in order not to worsen your condition, it is better to err and consult your doctor.
In acute pancreatitis, hungry days are prescribed, and ice bladder is applied to the abdominal area. For relief of pain, antispasmodic and analgesic agents are indicated. All pancreatitis treatment is carried out in the hospital, as we have already written above.
Treatment of chronic pancreatitis involves: first of all, compliance with the prescribed diet, prescribed painkillers, various vitamins, enzyme replacement therapy, treatment if there is diabetes and other endocrine diseases, you also need to timely treat gallstone disease.
Abuse of fatty foods, alcohol should be avoided, with overweight it is necessary to reduce weight. Also, do not use some food seasonings, especially spicy. Timely treat diseases of the stomach, intestines, organs of bile secretion, and follow the diet prescribed by your doctor for pancreatitis.