80% of all pancreatic cysts are non-neoplastic(1).
There is an increased prevalence ranging from 1.2-19% in the detection of pancreatic cysts in recent years(1).
Home Remedies For Pancreatic Cysts
Since the cause of pancreatic pseudocyst is similar to that of pancreatitis, it is better to prevent acute or chronic pancreatitis. The primary cause of pancreatitis is gallstones and alcohol consumption; therefore, the removal of gallstones from gallbladder or removal of gallbladder and complete abstinence from alcohol or reducing alcohol consumption can limit the chance of onset of pancreatitis. Elevated levels of triglycerides (>1000 mg/dL) also increase the risk of pancreatitis; it is the third most common cause of pancreatitis(3).
To avoid pancreatic cysts, a person can limit the intake of fat in his diet. They should eat a low-fat diet as tolerated and should restrict their daily intake of fats to 30-50 gm. Low-fat diet foods include non-fat or low-fat dairy, fruits and vegetables, whole grains, baked, grilled or steamed meat, meat, and dairy alternatives (such as tofu and almond milk). It is important to avoid processed foods, fried foods, colas, and sugary drinks, creams, and bakery(2), (3).
It is also important to engage in different physical activities as tolerated(2).
The patient should consult a doctor in case of any emergency.
Management Of Pancreatic Pseudocyst
Generally smaller pseudocysts <4 cm in diameter need no intervention and resolve on their own without any complications involved. However, larger cysts can become symptomatic and produce complications (such as cyst rupture, GI bleeding, infection, biliary obstruction), which mandate cystic fluid drainage(1).
Drainage of the pseudocyst can be accomplished either by percutaneous catheter drainage, endoscopic drainage (transpapillary drainage or transmural drainage), and surgical drainage. Catheter drainage has the highest rate of recurrence and failure, but it is suitable for temporary situations. Surgical drainage has a high success rate but involves greater complication rates due to its invasive nature. Endoscopic drainage is the preferred method of drainage due to its greater success rate, and lesser complications and recurrence rates(1), (2).
What Are Pancreatic Cysts?
Pancreatic cysts are localized fluid-filled cavities with thick cystic lining, sometimes consisting of solid component that is present in or around the pancreas. The increase in the imaging techniques (mainly CT scan and MRI) in recent times has led to greater frequency (about 1.2-19%) of pancreatic cyst detection(1).
Pancreatic cystic lesions are broadly classified into non-neoplastic lesions and neoplastic lesions, which can be further divided into serous and mucinous types depending on the type of fluid in the cystic cavity. Non-neoplastic pancreatic cysts are the most common pancreatic cystic lesions. Mucinous cystic neoplasm, Intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm, serous cystic neoplasm, and solid pseudopapillary neoplasm are the most commonly found neoplastic pancreatic lesions(1).
Non-Neoplastic Pancreatic Cysts
Pancreatic pseudocysts are the most common form of non-neoplastic pancreatic cysts, which account for nearly 80% of all pancreatic cysts.
They are known as pseudocyst as they are not true cysts due to a lack of cystic epithelial lining. Pseudocysts usually form several weeks (>4 weeks) after an acute attack of pancreatitis or gradually in chronic pancreatitis(1).
Causes And Symptoms Of Pseudocyst
Pancreatic pseudocyst appears after the onset of acute pancreatitis; therefore, the cause of pseudocyst is similar to the cause of pancreatitis. Chronic alcoholism and gallstone disease-account for 75-85% of the cases. In children, abdominal trauma is the most frequent cause of pseudocyst. Since pancreatitis is more prevalent in males, pseudocysts are also more common in males. Generally, multiple pseudocysts are observed in 15% of all cases of alcoholism. The size of the pseudocyst may range from 2-30 cm(2).
There is no special symptom that points towards a pancreatic pseudocyst. Patients may be asymptomatic or complain of mild symptoms that include continuous/recurrent abdominal pain, early satiety (feeling of fullness), anorexia, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal mass after an attack of pancreatitis, pleural effusion, jaundice (yellowing of sclera, dark urine, itching, pale stools), and pleural effusion. Fever and sepsis are seen in rare conditions and signify an infected pseudocyst(1), (2).
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