Stormy, make sure the manometry portion of the test is done BEFORE the sphincterotomy is done. Only if the pressures are raised in the common bile duct or at the sphincter should that 'cut' be made. Lacking raised pressures, no doc should consider a sphincterotomy. Please make sure your doc is a specialist in SOD. Most GI's think they know about the issues/outcome and they don't - sorry to say.
I had an ERCP done September 30, 2009 due to SOD. I was one of the lucky ones, because mine seems to have worked. They did cut the sphincter. The bile duct was plugged with scar tissue. It was cleaned out. The doctor said he didn't know what caused it and from the research I have done a lot of people have it. The ERCP is just like an endoscopy, but on a grander scale. I did have some discomfort after the ERCP, but nothing like before. I think it was my body getting back to normal. I never had a bout of pancreatitis with any of this, but I did lose a lot of weight. It is finally coming back a little at a time. It feels good to be able to eat again. Like CalGal said, make sure your doc knows what he is doing. That's the best advice anyone can give you. Let us know how you make out. God Bless and Good Luck!!
Stormy - ask your OB about doing this procedure while pregnant. the release of progesterone in your body during pregnancy may help that muscle to relax naturally - I had luck with that on my 3rd pregnancy, the only pregnancy I've had with SOD.
Also, I have to reiterate what CalGal said about the doctor. The doc performing the ERCP must have performed literally thousands with LOW pancreatits rates following the procedure to be considered an expert. There are way way way too many docs out there who will claim that they are experiencd. Do your homework extensively before going under the knife.
Another question you want to address is the fact that you may already be suffering from Pancreatitis. Does your chance increase if you already have it? Once the damange to yoru pan is done, it's not reversable.
I wish you the most luck with the SOD and your pregnancy.
Please keep us posted!
Thank you everyone for the great answers. I found out today that they are going to hold off on the ERCP until I deliver. Which is the end of August...I got discouraged as this is the third doc to tell me they can't help me. I am at the Mayo! If they won't...who will?? They said they will monitor me closely through weekly blood tests, appointments etc. They also said if I get worse they will go ahead and do the ERCP. I am strong, I will get through this. I am able to hold liquids including nutrient drinks and occasional food. As long as I keep my weight up and gain a few pounds then they will not have to insert the feeding tube. I am worried about the medications I am on...especially the pain pills as I never took anything with my last pregnancies. I thought many times if I should terminate this pregnancy to get me healthy but I just can't! I feel as this baby saved me because I got tired of the local ERs treating me like a drug addict that I was giving up...then along came baby...shortly after, diagnoses and answers I have been seeking for over a year! So I have to give the baby a chance! I take way less pain pills then I could and have been learning to deal with the pain, which lucky me always go away...but always comes back. Anyway, sorry for the rant but I do feel better :) If you have any advice or diet tips...etc...please pass them my way! Just talking with someone who knows what I am going through and can give me hope would be great.