There are several most common pancreas disorders, and any of those disorders endangers the whole body. These disorders can be identified by the symptoms and most common ones are pancreatic cancer, pancreatic tumor, chronic pancreatitis, acute pancreatitis and diabetes mellitus.
Although many of the symptoms may be common or misleading it is very important to diagnose any potential pancreatic disorder precisely. Abdominal pain is the common symptom of all the pancreatitis disorders and it can be severe and sudden.
Symptoms of chronic pancreatitis are similar to acute one, and they may be low blood pressure, malabsorption, loss of weight, dehydration, fever, vomiting, and rapid pulse rate.
Symptoms of pancreatic cancer may vary depending on stage the illness is and the location that is affected by cancer. Common symptoms for early stages of pancreatic cancer are loss of weight, jaundice, stomach ache, frequent fevers, backache, loss of appetite, itch in the various body parts, etc.
Surgery and complications
For many of those pancreatic disorders surgery is performed, especially for cases of cancer. Pancreatic surgery is also called pancreaticoduodenectomy or PD, for short. Although it is very demanding surgical procedure, it is often a life saving for patients. There are many possible complications of pancreatic surgery, but pancreatic cancer being number three cause of death in U.S., and a lack of successful non surgical alternative (pancreatic cancer is notoriously resistant to all other kinds of treatments like chemo, radio and immuno therapy) it is performed, nevertheless.
So despite the risk, the pancreatic surgery remains a viable option for cancer patients, as well as patients with chronic pancreatitis. In cases of latter, the goal of surgical procedure is to relieve the pressure from a swollen pancreas to adjacent organs and to eliminate long term pain.
In postoperative period, mortality rate in first 30 days is only 5% or less but overall mortality rate of postoperative complications is 23%. Main causes of post operative complications in cases of pancreatic surgery are pneumonia, pulmonary embolism, cardiac problems, renal dysfunction, cerebrovascular complications, respiratory distress, and metabolic and hepatic dysfunctions.
Luckily, due to improvement in post operative intensive care and complications are such as pulmonary myocardial and thromboembolic problems are significantly decreased. Main and most dangerous complication still remains delayed gastric emptying or DGE, septic complications, pancreatic fistulas and abdominal hemorrhage.
In conclusion, we might say that despite of waste progress of operative and post operative surgical procedures in cases of pancreatic surgery and reduced mortality rate due to post operative complications pancreatic surgery is still not totally safe procedure.