Pancreatitis, illustration

Pancreatitis, illustration

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Credit: JOHN BAVOSI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Pancreatitis. Illustration of pancreatitis, inflammation of the pancreas (yellow organ). The gallbladder is coloured green and a section of the small intestine is shown. The most common causes of acute pancreatitis are gallstones and heavy alcohol use. Chronic pancreatitis may develop as a result of acute pancreatitis and is commonly caused by long-term alcohol abuse. Acute pancreatitis is usually treated with intravenous fluids, pain medication, and sometimes antibiotics. Typically no eating or drinking are allowed and a feeding tube to the stomach may be used. In chronic pancreatitis, long-term dietary changes and pancreatic enzyme replacement may also be required. Occasionally surgery is indicated.

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