Pancreatic cancer, pancreatitis, and other pancreas diseases are often uncomfortable or painful. But, when you trust the pancreas disease specialists at Gastroenterology & Nutrition of Central Florida, Nehme Gabriel, MD, and Raj Borade, MD, you can get an early diagnosis and effective treatment. Even the most serious pancreas disease, pancreatic cancer, is curable if detected early. Call the office in The Villages, Leesburg, or Brownwood Paddock Square in Wildwood, Florida, or book your appointment online now.
Pancreas disease is a group of different diseases and conditions affecting the pancreas, the gland in the back of the stomach. The pancreas creates pancreatic enzymes and hormones to help break down food and use it for energy.
Pancreas damage and malfunction can lead to a number of serious health issues, including diabetes.
The most common forms of pancreas disease include:
Pancreas inflammation causes serious upper stomach pain and other symptoms like fever, diarrhea, bloating, nausea, and vomiting. Acute pancreatitis attacks usually occur suddenly and last for a few days. Gallstones are a common cause of acute pancreatitis.
Chronic pancreatitis has the same symptoms as acute pancreatitis. But, with chronic pancreatitis, the pancreas inflammation is constant rather than in short bouts. Long-term, chronic pancreatitis can destroy your pancreas completely, leading to malnutrition, weight loss, and diabetes.
Pancreatic cancer is the fourth most common cause of cancer deaths, accounting for 7% of all cancer deaths. Pancreatic cancer often develops without causing symptoms, but it may cause yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice).
Treatment for pancreas disease depends on the disease and symptoms. Your provider performs blood tests, stool tests, imaging exams, and possibly ERCP, an endoscopic procedure in which your doctor examines your pancreatic and bile ducts, to determine your specific disease.
If you have underlying issues like gallstones, your Gastroenterology & Nutrition of Central Florida doctor treats those problems first. You may also need treatment for diabetes or other problems caused by your pancreas disease.
Nutrition and lifestyle changes are also important for pancreas disease treatments. This usually includes implementing a healthy low-fat diet, eliminating alcohol consumption, and stopping smoking. Certain dietary supplements can also help with digestion and overall health.
Pancreatic cancer treatment depends on your age, expected life span, personal wishes, and other factors in your specific case. In some cases, particularly early-stage pancreatic cancer, surgical resection — partial or total pancreas removal — is the best treatment to cure the disease.
In cases of late-stage pancreatic cancer that likely won’t improve with resection, you still have options like clinical trial participation and alternative therapies. Gastroenterology & Nutrition of Central Florida is here to educate and support you in all your treatment decisions.
For help with pancreas disease, call the experts at Gastroenterology & Nutrition of Central Florida, or set up your appointment online now.