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Chronic pancreatitis and foul smelling body odor?
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Chronic pancreatitis and foul smelling body odor?

My husband has had chronic pancreatitis for the past 5 years. We found out 5 months ago he has course calicifications throughout the pancreas with cysts on the head and tail. He is insulin-diabetic now and has lost approx 40 pounds. He has good and bad days. My concern is this. When he feels "bad" an odor of feces eminates from his body. Or sometimes it even smells like really dirty oily hair...mild but nonetheless notable. I am very concerned and can't seem to find an answer. Any thoughts would be appreciated.
14 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar f tn
Welcome to the gastroenterology community!  Has he seen a gastroenterologist aobut this?  What testing has he had done?
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Avatar n tn
We do not have insurance right now. But when I noticed this smell (and he did too) we both had the terrible thought that he had pancreatic cancer. I took him to the county ER and that's when they did a CT and discovered that the pancreas had course calcification's throughout and cysts on the head and tail which were new...they didn't not say "cancer" or "tumors" or anything like that. He did not have a white count but his platelets were below normal I believe 147,000 and he was slightly anemic (we had stopped eating meat because we read somewhere that the fat in meat causes pain and is hard to digest...I was buying the LEANEST of meats BTW). Anyway, the anemia seems to have improved. He sweats every night...some nights worse than others. He still works but is tired a lot and tries to take pain med only when needed. He is still smoking cigarettes however :(
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Avatar f tn
Pancreatic cancer is very rare so I don't think you need to worry too much about this.  I really think he needs to see a gastroenterologist about this to figure out what is going on.
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Avatar n tn
Agreed. When we are able to get some insurance we will see one...thanks for your input.
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2827584 tn?1340583296
Bad plan. If your bald tires were threatening you whenever you drove the car you would replace them. The benefits of early diagnosis of a medical problem are amortized over the rest of your life. If the chronic pancreatitis isn't the result of alcohol abuse it needs an answer. If it is then the cost of the evalation would be less than the cigarette and alcohol bill for the year.
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Avatar n tn
Thanks Christopher. His pancreatitis was caused by alcohol abuse. He quit drinking 4 years ago. I'm just wondering about this odd smell that develops occasionally. Thanks for your input. I am trying to figure out something to get him some kind of insurance. He is self-employed and now has a pre-exisiting condition so it's kind of tough. I am curious if a duct is blocked or something, but I would imagine the CT he had a few months ago would have revealed that?
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2827584 tn?1340583296
One possibility is that it actually relates to the diabetes and has nothing to do with the pancreatic abnormality. When diabetics get a little out of control you can smell the acetone that is created. There are actually service dogs that alert folks to impending diabetic crises because they are more sensitive to the smell.
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Avatar n tn
Yeah, I don't think it's the acetone...I am a Registered Nurse and worked the ER for 7 years...I have smelled ketoacidosis and this is not it. But I like the way you think ;) But you're right, his sugars are out of control. He often "dumps" his sugars because of too much insulin administration. He follows a sliding scale the Dr. gave him and on occasion winds up nearly passing out because his sugar dumped to 32! (I have honey on hand at all times!) The time I took him to the county ER to get the CT, we told the ER doc about the smell, that that was our main concern, and he had no input as to what it's all about. The Gastroenterologists he has seen know nothing about it either. They just want to give him Protonix and pancreatic enzymes. He really needs to see a specialist that focuses really just on the pancreas. God willing I will get a job soon and get us some insurance again. This whole thing has prompted me to reevaluate my thoughts on healthcare and know have become an advocate for a MEDICARE for All campaign so that everybody can get low cost, adequate healthcare...everyone in, no one out. Medical care should not have to be a luxury to the few that can afford it I have come to realize. Thanks for your input, advice, and just listening Doc!
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Avatar m tn
Hey Joan,

Don't know if your reading still but, he needs to quit smoking ASAP. The smell is due to mal-absorption and processing of nutrients. I was a longtime sufferer of pancreatitis  and have diabetes. You have to try and normalize your system. Cut out all processed/highly refined foods, do juicing, and small consistent meals.  Make your husband quit smoking....it makes the pancreas work too hard.
Since his is chronic, its all about maintenance, and allowing the body to do some healing as well!
If you want I can send you a plan I used which saved my life, and kept me functional. The doctors will just give you meds to ease pain....and say sorry there is nothing we can do.
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Avatar m tn
hello, i am a Male 45 years old and was diagnosed with Chronic Pancreatitis
5 Years ago and a 20 a Day Smoker and still drink a bottle of  Wine a Day,.
I cant smell Myself and am very clean but i am aware that i am releasing a Gas smell like rotten eggs or Gas ,people say whos dropped one ... if you could bottle that you could send a Man to the Moon even in a very large area.
i would like to know how you .turned your life around ??
regards
Eamon
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Avatar f tn
Hi. I think I have the same problem and its getting worse. People say I smell like a bathroom all the time and it is really affecting my job. I have gone gluten free and dairy free and did veggies and fish for 9 months and it got so much worse that I started bleeding rectally. I have tried everything. I recently had an untrasound that found a contracted thickwalled gallbladder so I'm hoping that gallstones are causing my pancreas to malfunction and removing it will restore normal function to my pancreas but I'm am afraid that this will not fix the problem. I heard my district manager on the phone tell someone that something has to be done because the smell is too bad. Please help me.
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Avatar m tn
Tina I would try pancreatin.  You can get it at Amazon or a health food store.  The Now brand sold on Amazon is the best value.  What it is is the digestive enzymes processed from pig pancreases.  It is a much,much cheaper alternative to the enzyme replacement therapy that a doctor would prescribe, such as Creon.  I've been told that it isn't quite as effective, but it's a great value.  The main side effect of taking too much pancreatin is a bit uncomfortable in more ways than one: itchy anus. Lol! Hope this helps!
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Avatar f tn
I would appreciate you eating plan!
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Avatar n tn
My husband has the same smells coming from his body....again 5 years ago he had a 5 inch cyst in his pancreas and was in hospital for 3 months ...it was caused through an endoscopy trying to put a stent in to bypass some stones trapped in a tube .....he sweats at night , his hair smells like oily and he has a chemical smell about him ......his was not alcohol related as he doesn't drink a lot ...he is also bloated, but as yet has not lost weight ....
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