If upper abdominal pain, nausea, or vomiting don’t go away or get worse over time, you may have chronic pancreatitis. If so, the expert gastroenterology team at Peak Gastroenterology Associates, with locations in Colorado Springs, Castle Rock, Salida, Denver, Woodland Park, and Parker, Colorado, can diagnose your condition and treat it to prevent serious complications. Schedule an appointment with Peak Gastroenterology Associates over the phone or online to learn more about your options.
Your pancreas is a gland located near your stomach and small intestine that secretes special juices to aid in digestion. It also releases glucagon and insulin into your bloodstream.
If you have pancreatitis, your pancreas becomes inflamed, which can lead to serious complications if it’s left untreated. Pancreatitis may be acute, subside within a few days, or be long-lasting.
If you have pancreatitis, you might experience one or more of the following signs and symptoms:
Untreated pancreatitis puts you at risk for infection, cysts, kidney failure, diabetes, breathing problems, malnutrition, and cancer.
While anybody can develop pancreatitis, the following factors increase your risk of experiencing it:
Maintaining a healthy weight, not smoking, avoiding excessive alcohol, and adopting other healthy lifestyle habits can lower your risk of developing pancreatitis.
To diagnose pancreatitis, your gastroenterologist reviews your symptoms and medical history. They complete a physical exam and may use blood tests, stool tests, and imaging tests, including CT scans, MRIs, or ultrasounds.
Your personalized pancreatitis treatment plan depends on the type and severity of your condition. Your Peak Gastroenterology Associates provider might suggest:
Making lifestyle changes can reduce damage to your pancreas. Examples include not smoking or drinking, fasting, eating a well-balanced diet low in fat, and drinking more fluids. If you struggle to avoid alcohol, your doctor can refer you to a treatment program in your area.
Taking medications for pain relief or enzyme supplements for improved digestion are additional pancreatitis treatment options. Your doctor may recommend IV fluids or nutritional supplements too.
Undergoing a surgical procedure can help you better manage pancreatitis and experience symptom relief. Your gastroenterologist might surgically repair bile duct obstruction, remove your gallbladder, drain pancreatic fluid, or remove diseased tissue.
Don’t live with unpleasant pancreatitis symptoms or let the disease progress to serious complications. Schedule an appointment with Peak Gastroenterology Associates over the phone or online today.