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Avatar universal

diagnosis chronic pancreatitis, next step ERCP???????

I was diagnosed with chronic pancreatitis this am and schedualed for a ERCP for friday.  I have some concerns about this diagnosis and this test.  I have not been hospitalized for this condition at all, not even ER. it has taken me over a month to  get diagnosis and still no relief from discomfort. Just more tests to take.  I look like a junkie from all the blood they have taken and they want more.  My almase and lipase levels have continued to rise over the course of the past fourteen days.  No gallbladder disease is presented and only slight swelling of pancreas found during CT.( friday sept20) I am feeling worse as the days go by. He did give me a RX for Creon 10.  ?????? something about it will slow or cease the production of enzymes my body is making? I have read about pancreatitis and seem to remember that this ERCP test alone can cause pancreatitis, and not to sure I want to feel any worse then what I do now if this is the case. I just dont know what else to expect and this quack I have for a Dr doesnt seem to concerned with answering my questions, puts me off telling me to wait and see what the tests show.  Not schedualled for another visit with him in office until end of OCt.  How long does pancreatitis take to go away?  I find taking tylenol is not helping, and asprin wont stay down there long enough to do any good, any other suggestions or thoughts would be greatly appreciated. I am really getting scared.
5 Responses
Avatar universal
The ERCP he probably ordered to check to see if there is any blockage in your bile duct - which might be causing the chronic pancreatitis. Perhaps the bile duct has a norrowing or stone in it. Basically the ERCP is pretty safe with only the dye they use. Yes, there are people who get pancreatitis from having it done, but is only about 20% of them. My suggestion to you is to stop eating. I know that sounds awful, but the treatment for pancreatitis is for no food for at least 2 - 3 days. This is what they do if you were to be hospitalized. You want to rest your pancreas so it can heal. When you eat it causes it to work causing more stress to the organ. Drink lots of water. The diet once you feel better is a very strict low fat diet, as the pancreas's job is to help digest fat.
Avatar universal
I'm sorry I didn't see your earlier post about having a fever, chills and the shakes until today.  It's good that you got your doctor to see you pronto.  Lor is right, the best thing for you to do now, prior to your ERCP, is liquids only.  Your pancreas needs to rest, this will put less strain on it and cause less irritation and inflamation.  Those rising a & l levels mean that it's inflamed and the ERCP is necessary for the doctor to find out what's causing it, since apparently they couldn't see as much as they needed to from your CT-scan.

The Creon enzyme supplements are for later, after your ERCP, for you to use whenever you eat meals or snacks.  If you can stay on liquids now for the two days prior to your ERCP you will be better off.  Just make sure that you keep yourself well hydrated as possible, gatorade, ginger ale, non-acidic juices, clear fat-free chicken broth, miso broth,  would be best.  

Though ERCP's can cause pancreatitis, if the doctor performing it is a specialist who performs the procedure frequently you shouldn't have too much trouble.  Just make sure that you don't leave the hospital until you are sure you're feeling well, it's easier to treat any problems while still in the hospital, especially over a weekend.

A chronic pancreatitis episode can last for several days.  The condition doesn't actually "go away", it just settles down.  It is a degenerative disorder and worsens with time.  Some people have pain from it on a daily basis, others have episodes that come and go periodically.  All of us are treated with narcotics for the pain as needed, a low fat diet and enzyme supplements.

Post again if you have any more questions.
Avatar universal
I'm not trying to be nosey, but by any chance to you live in the Central FL area?  I ask because of your nickname and I do live in Central FL.

I recently had a horrible pancreatitis attack.  I was in the hospital for 6 days and was told if I had been 50+ years old I would have only had a 50/50 chance of survival (I'm 31).  I ended up having my gallbladder out after they got "control" of the pancreatitis.  I was lucky when I was admitted to the hospital because I was assigned a Gastro Dr that I really like.  I didn't have one before I was admitted.

They were unable to find any gallstones anywhere.  I underwent sonogram, x-rays, CT and HIDA scan with nothing showing up but an enlarged gallbladder with a thickened wall.  The doctors didn't come right out and say it, but I got the feeling they were stumped as to why the pancreatitis was present without stones.  My A&L levels were "off the charts" and that was actually what got me admitted to the hospital - not the gallbladder.  My urine had even changed color - kind of like dark ale beer.

Anyway, my Gastro did not want to do an ERCP - even if they found stones - because of the percentage of chances it could cause pancreatitis, and the fact that I already had it.  The Gastro I go to told me how many years he had been doing ERCPs (many) and that he had also tought the procedure for a number of years.  He was very good about explaining all the pros and cons of the procedure to me.

Needless to say I never had the ERCP done, I went 4 days with nothing orally - no food, water, ice chips, brushing my teeth only once a day.  I was on IV fluid and antibiotics.  I didn't know how dangerous pancreatitis can be - it really took a long time for it to sink in.

I am now still having some post-op problems my DR still doesn't want to do the ERCP because of the possible pancreatitis.  I too have been diagnosed with CP at this point.  If at all possible you may want to get another opinion just to be on the safe side.  Unfortunately, I know how painful CP can be and it isn't easy getting into a doctor when you are an established patient, let alone a new patient, but again, if possible you may want to give it a shot.
Avatar universal
I have been 7 months going threw tests, in and out of hospitals for chronic pancreatitis.  I have done everything I have been told to by the Dr. and I am in misery.  I am on all kinds of medication and now on medical leave from work.  It has changed my day to day life activities and my whole life.  I am very depressed due to pain from this disease.  I feel that no one understands.  My Dr. would not even return my calls till recently.  I just did not understand.  I do not think they fully understand this disease theirself.  I just hope no one else has to go through what I have been through and still going.  I have an appt. in Louisville, Oct. 7th to a specialist.  Maybe they will find me some hope. I am actually thinking of going on disability really don't have much choice.  I don't even have an income coming in right now to live on.  I have a 13 year old son and really can not enjoy him due to this disease.  I just don't feel like doing anything everything is a chore to me.  I am only 39 and still young but I feel old now or for the past 7 months I have been through pure torture.  My first attach I was in the hospital for 6 days, since then I can not count all the attacks I have had.  I have not went to hospital for all of them so sick of going to hospital.  Well just thought I would let someone else know I am going through this awful problem too, hopefully someone does something for us with this disease.  They do not want to give you pain medication which is so silly.  Who care if you get addicted?  I just want some relief instead of sitting in tears all the time.  I get so angry when the Dr.'s say maybe I will give you tylenol I just look at them and say its time for me to go.
Avatar universal
Hello 5fan I to am from the central Florida area and I was in the hospital for 6 day's with pancrentitus and my levels were also off the charts with no gull stones but they took out the gull bladder anyway and I still sometimes feel like I am having an attack. I get nuasuea and now migranes to boot and constant diarerra.  I don't really eat much I drink more water than anything now instead of eating or i'll be in the bathroom for 15-20 mins. Do you sometimes still feel that way or am I the only one with this problem?
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