Do Pancreatic Cysts Cause Diarrhea & What Is The Best Treatment For It?

Pancreatic cysts cause inflammation in the ducts that block fluids in one or more of the ducts causing diarrhea, constipation, fatty stools, and several other digestive problems. 1. 2.

Most pancreatic cysts are benign however some are cancerous and would require surgery for the removal of pseudocyst or a serous cystadenoma causing pain or other symptoms. 3.

The best way to treat the high-risk cysts is through surgery whereas lower-risk cysts are monitored with repeated scans or endoscopic ultrasound. 4.

Do Pancreatic Cysts Cause Diarrhea?

Pancreatic cysts are found in a large number of people with von Hippel–Lindau (a rare genetic disorder characterized by the formation of tumors and fluid-filled sacs) because these people have cilia loss. Pancreatic cysts are generally asymptomatic and are often discovered incidentally during imaging tests of the abdomen.

This causes inflammation in the ducts that block fluids in one or more of the ducts causing diarrhea, constipation, fatty stools, and several other digestive problems. Some of the signs and symptoms of pancreatic cysts include

  • Continuous and recurrent abdominal pain that can radiate until the neck
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Unexplained diarrhea
  • Weight loss due to insufficient secretion of pancreatic enzymes
  • Abdominal bloating

Symptoms can occur days or weeks after a pancreatic attack. The most widespread cause for the occurrence of pancreatic cyst is due to severe alcohol consumption. Additional causes involve cystic fibrosis and a few other genetic disorders of the pancreas.

The treatment of the condition is often dependent on the severity of the disease. The initial therapy primarily oriented towards pain management and nutritional support. 1. 2.

What Is The Best Treatment For Pancreatic Cysts?

Most pancreatic cysts are benign however some are cancerous and would require surgery for the removal of pseudocyst or a serous cystadenoma causing pain or other symptoms.

Careful monitoring and treatment often depend on the type of cyst (Pseudocysts, Serous cystadenomas (SCAs), Intraductal Papillary Mucinous Neoplasms and, Mucinous Cystic Neoplasms (MCNs) you are experiencing, its size and its characteristics.

Watchful Waiting – Careful surveillance with periodic imaging tests is often important to determine if it is requiring removal. Not all pancreatic cysts are cancerous, even a larger cyst if it is benign unless bothering and causing pain can be left alone. However, when you have abnormal growth or the growth of the cysts is 5mm or more annually it requires careful watching. 3.

Drainage – While the majority of severe pseudocysts disappear immediately, few may necessitate drainage. Endoscopic drainage seems to be an efficient mechanism in treating pancreatic pseudocysts. Drainage is done through a flexible tube called endoscope inserted through your mouth down inside your stomach and the small intestine. The tube is attached to a needle that helps in draining the cyst.

Surgery – Certain types of pancreatic cysts require surgical removal because of the increased risk of cancer. When the cyst starts to enlarge, your healthcare provider may suggest surgery to remove enlarged pseudocyst or a serous cystadenoma causing abdominal pain and other complications. The best way to treat the high-risk cysts is through surgery whereas lower-risk cysts are monitored with repeated scans or endoscopic ultrasound. 4.

When there is an inflammation on the pancreas, it can result in pancreatic cysts. You may experience no symptoms when you have a pancreatic cyst. Most cysts are visible only during an imaging test of the abdomen.

Blood tests are often helpful in evaluating the condition of the pancreas. However, radiographic tests such as computer tomography, magnetic resonance imaging are very effective in evaluating the structure.

References:

  1. “Symptoms.” Stanford Health Care (SHC) – Stanford Medical Center, 12 Sept. 2017, stanfordhealthcare.org/medical-conditions/digestion-and-metabolic-health/pancreatic-cysts/symptoms.html.
  2. “Common Disorders of the Pancreas.” The National Pancreas Foundation, 27 Feb. 2017, pancreasfoundation.org/patient-information/about-the-pancreas/common-disorders-of-the-pancreas/.
  3. Frothingham, Scott. “Pancreatic Cysts: Symptoms, Types, Treatment, and Risk Factors.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 16 Jan. 2019, www.healthline.com/health/cyst-on-pancreas.
  4. “Pancreatic Cysts.” Pancreatic Cysts – Brigham and Women’s Hospital, www.brighamandwomens.org/surgery/general-and-gastrointestinal-surgery/pancreas/pancreatic-cysts.

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