Pancreatitis (cont.)

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What is the treatment for pancreatitis?

In most cases of acute pancreatitis, admission to the hospital is needed, whereas some cases of chronic pancreatitis can be managed in an outpatient setting.

Depending on the underlying cause of pancreatitis, management may vary to address the specific cause. In general, however, the following treatment regimen will always be initiated for the treatment of pancreatitis.

First-line treatment will involve:

  • Fasting to help the pancreas to rest and recover.
  • IV fluids to prevent dehydration while fasting
  • Pancreatitis can be very painful, thus intravenous pain medication is often necessary.

If pancreatitis is due to an obstructing gallstone, surgical intervention may be required to remove the gallstone and/or remove the gallbladder. Intervention may also be required to treat a pseudocyst or to remove part of the affected pancreas.

If alcohol consumption is the cause of pancreatitis, abstinence from alcohol and an alcohol rehabilitation program will be recommended.

If a medication or chemical exposure is found to be the cause of pancreatitis, then removal of the medication or offending exposure is recommended.

If high triglycerides are the cause of pancreatitis, then your health-care professional may prescribe medication to decrease the patient's triglyceride levels.

Medications for pancreatitis

In general, the above treatment regimen is the mainstay of pancreatitis management.

Pain medication and medication to control nausea may also be prescribed.

In cases of chronic pancreatitis, your health-care professional also may prescribe pancreatic enzyme supplements in order to help the body digest certain nutrients.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/28/2015

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