Chronic Pancreatitis - Is there any cure ? Has Medical field improved to tackle this kind of an issue ?
My father (Age - 53) is suffering from Chronic Pancreatitis from the past 12 years. He gets this acute pain ( SPASMS ) ONCE every WEEK. And nowadays its even worse sometimes pain comes twice within a week.
I don't know what his exact medical condition is ? but this is what i know of pancreatitis - The Pancreas duct is blocked with small calci stones which in turn blocks the pancreatic juice produced by the pancreatic cells. Now because the juice is not flowing out of the duct freely, it starts digesting the pancreas itself. This causes the uncontrollable pain (Spasms) in the abdomen part and pain can continue for hours and even a day unless a painkiller is used.
Now my question to concerned person is that - Is there any cure for Chronic Pancreatitis ? Because this disease was diagnosed 12 years ago, when there was less advancement in medical sciences. I hear many advance research programs going on around the world. So i was kind of hoping i would be able to get a good solution.
The Cure i know - The cure i know would be cutting off the pancreas. But this would be not so good because the duct is not completely blocked by the stones and some juice is being released and digestion is going on somewhat. Right now my father is taking in artificial pancreatic enzymes through tablets for every meal but we are looking out for good solution.
I request the doctor / specialist to give me the best solution looking at the medical advancements & facilities available right now.
As you already know, pancreatitis is one of the more frustrating and difficult medical problems a person can be faced with. Since you already know what is causing the problem (sludge in the duct) is there a reason the doctor hasn't perfomed an ERCP to clean it out? Placement of stents can sometimes help to keep the duct open a bit further to prevent more sludge formation, but they also tend to fall out.
In the meantime, if your dad isn't seeing a Pain Management specialist, he needs to get one. Pancreatitis is one of the most painful conditions to deal with, and he needs some strong medication to deal with that. The pancreas is such a sensitive organ. Some people end up with chronic pancreatitis and a lifetime of pain after only one acute attack.
As to your question about the existence of any new treatments, I know of none. Chronic pancreatitis is still treated by treating the symptoms. Well, unless there is an underlying problem like a pseudo cyst or cancer that would require surgery. If you and your dad are not convinced that he's getting the best opinion possible, you'll need to get a second opinion. Actually, second opinions are a good idea any time you're dealing with a major medical issue. :-)
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