As a rule, the diagnosis of chronic pancreatitis, the symptoms of which will be described below, is set after the patient has undergone ultrasound of the abdominal organs, where there will be a certain consolidation of pancreatic tissues. This is one of the signs of the inflammatory process. However, only an ultrasound examination of the pancreas is small, in order to diagnose this disease.
Alas, the chronic pancreatitis, the symptoms of which many physicians consider typical, is not so simple. He should not necessarily be present at persons who have crossed a certain age line. Correct diagnosis and treatment is complicated by the fact that until now the reasons (except, perhaps, alcoholism) for the appearance of this disease are not clear. In addition, chronic pancreatitis is cunning and may be asymptomatic for a long time. But in medicine, there has already been a tendency to regard the disease as a separate type of pathology of the digestive system. And that's what complex of symptoms she has.
Subjective symptoms of chronic pancreatitis
Subjective symptoms are nothing more than a patient's complaints about what concerns him, which the doctor must take into account when making a diagnosis. Most often, patients can complain of such violations in the process of digestion, like: constipation or diarrhea, which is chronic, pain at the top of the abdomen or in the region of the left hypochondrium, bloating. This is something that worries almost all patients. Further options are possible. In some cases, the pain begins immediately after eating (especially fatty), in others - the ailments are not associated with meals at all and can occur at different times. Often, patients experience weight loss, loss of energy, decreased appetite, and periodic bitterness in the mouth.
Chronic pancreatitis: symptoms of an objective nature
To the patient with such complaints the doctor, first of all, should appoint the analysis of a feces. This is an important stage in the diagnosis of this disease, since it is the nature of the excrement that can reflect the quality of the digestive process. Thus, patients with chronic pancreatitis have a liquid or mucous stool, usually in large quantities. The lack of enzymes that must break down fats explains the presence in the stool of the patient of undigested food fragments (for example, meat fibers). Thus, an undeniable symptom of chronic pancreatitis is the enzymatic insufficiency of the pancreas.
In addition, the doctor (and the patient himself) can note the dryness of the patient's skin, "zaedy" in the corners of the lips, brittle hair. And the reason for this is hypovitaminosis and anemia (lack of iron), which are often accompanied by chronic pancreatitis.
Another symptom of the disease is the painful abdomen of the patient above the umbilical fossa, in the left hypochondrium. And already an ultrasound of the pancreas, a blood test for her enzymes and glucose will help clarify the diagnosis.
How to treat chronic pancreatitis
Treatment for diagnosed chronic pancreatitis has 5 goals:
1. Correction of the diet. As soon as the period of exacerbation (in the very first days) of chronic pancreatitis begins, the symptoms of which are discussed above, the patient is recommended to give up food altogether and use only mineral waters with alkali (for example, Borjomi). After 2-3 days gradually in the diet of the patient is introduced porridge, steamed dishes, lean meat and low-fat fish in a boiled form. During an exacerbation it is necessary to refuse raw fruits and vegetables and milk. And in the period of remission with a view to preventing exacerbation, fatty, acidic, acute, strongly salty and alcohol should be discarded.
2. Elimination of pain. This is achieved by prescribing the patient with antispasmodics and analgesics: papaverine, drotaverin (no-shpy), analgin, baralgina, diclofenac, etc.
3. Setting up the digestive process and compensating for the lack of enzymes in the pancreas. To do this, the doctor appoints special enzyme preparations (Creon, Mezim, Pancreatin) and determines the correct dosage. Since this stage is fundamentally important in the treatment of chronic pancreatitis, the patient must clearly follow all the doctor's recommendations regarding the developed regimen of the drug. As a rule, the course of treatment with enzyme preparations lasts two to three months, after which the dosage is halved and the treatment is continued for another one to two months.
4. Stop the process of inflammation and regeneration of pancreatic tissues. To do this, use drugs that reduce the acidity of gastric juice. This ranitidine, blocker H2 receptors, and omeprazole (or lansoprazole), blockers of the proton pump.
A person suffering from chronic pancreatitis will have to come to terms with his illness and stick to the diet described above, because the treatment of the disease lasts a very long time. Any gastronomic relief, as well as the refusal of the enzyme medications prescribed by the doctor, can turn into a new aggravation.