Pancreatic Diseases

Abnormal levels of amylase may indicate pancreatitis or another problem with your pancreas. Order an amylase serum test to measure the amount of amylase in your blood. Order from Ulta Lab Tests and learn about your health today.


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The major sources of amylase are the pancreas and the salivary glands. The most common cause of elevation of serum amylase is inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis). In acute pancreatitis, serum amylase begins to rise within 6-24 hours, remains elevated for a few days and returns to normal in 3-7 days. Other causes of elevated serum amylase are inflammation of salivary glands (mumps), biliary tract disease and bowel obstruction. Elevated serum amylase can also be seen with drugs (e.g., morphine) which constrict the pancreatic duct sphincter preventing excretion of amylase into the intestine.

In pancreatitis, urine levels of amylase reflect serum changes by a time lag of 6-10 hours.


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C-Peptide is useful in the evaluation of pancreatic beta cell function and for determining the source of insulin in patients with hyperinsulinemic hypoglycemia.

C-Peptide is useful in distinguishing insulin-secreting tumors, i.e., insulinomas, from exogenous insulin administration. C-Peptide concentrations are severely depressed or absent in Type 1 diabetes mellitus. C-Peptide is also useful in monitoring patients who have received islet cell or pancreatic transplants. It is also measured as an additional means for evaluating glucose tolerance and glibenclamide-glucose tests.

C-Peptide is useful in distinguishing insulin-secreting tumors, i.e., insulinomas, from exogenous insulin administration. C-Peptide concentrations are severely depressed or absent in Type 1 diabetes mellitus. C-Peptide is also useful in monitoring patients who have received islet cell or pancreatic transplants. It is also measured as an additional means for evaluating glucose tolerance and glibenclamide-glucose tests.

C-Peptide is useful in distinguishing insulin-secreting tumors, i.e., insulinomas, from exogenous insulin administration. C-Peptide concentrations are severely depressed or absent in Type 1 diabetes mellitus. C-Peptide is also useful in monitoring patients who have received islet cell or pancreatic transplants. It is also measured as an additional means for evaluating glucose tolerance and glibenclamide-glucose tests.

C-Peptide is useful in distinguishing insulin-secreting tumors, i.e., insulinomas, from exogenous insulin administration. C-Peptide concentrations are severely depressed or absent in Type 1 diabetes mellitus. C-Peptide is also useful in monitoring patients who have received islet cell or pancreatic transplants. It is also measured as an additional means for evaluating glucose tolerance and glibenclamide-glucose tests.

C-Peptide is useful in distinguishing insulin-secreting tumors, i.e., insulinomas, from exogenous insulin administration. C-Peptide concentrations are severely depressed or absent in Type 1 diabetes mellitus. C-Peptide is also useful in monitoring patients who have received islet cell or pancreatic transplants. It is also measured as an additional means for evaluating glucose tolerance and glibenclamide-glucose tests.

Peptide is useful in distinguishing insulin-secreting tumors, i.e., insulinomas, from exogenous insulin administration. C-Peptide concentrations are severely depressed or absent in Type 1 diabetes mellitus. C-Peptide is also useful in monitoring patients who have received islet cell or pancreatic transplants. It is also measured as an additional means for evaluating glucose tolerance and glibenclamide-glucose tests.

C-peptide is useful in distinguishing insulin-secreting tumors, i.e. , insulinomas, from exogenous insulin administration. C-peptide concentrations are severely depressed or absent in Type 1 diabetes mellitus. C-peptide is also useful in monitoring patients who have received islet cell or pancreatic transplants. It is also measured as an additional means for evaluating glucose tolerance and glibenclamide-glucose tests.

C3a desArg is a cleavage product of C3 complement component activation. Elevated levels of C3a have been reported in patients with acute lyme disease, acute pancreatitis, systemic lupus erythematosus, and adult respiratory distress syndrome.


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A large percentage of patients with gastrointestinal tumors (such as pancreatic, liver, gastric, colorectal tumors) and some other malignancies have been shown to have elevated serum CA 19-9 levels. Serum CA 19-9 levels may be useful for monitoring disease activity or predicting relapse following treatment. CA 19-9 should not be used as a screening test.

Cardio IQ® Insulin Resistance Panel with Score

Includes

  • Insulin, Intact, LC/MS/MS
  • C-Peptide, LC/MS/MS
  • Insulin Resistance Score

Patient Preparation

  • Overnight fasting is required

Clinical Significance

The determination of insulin in serum is primarily used for the diagnosis of glycemic disorders in diabetic and pre-diabetic patients in the assessment of insulin resistant syndromes. Insulin is synthesized by the pancreatic beta cell as a precursor, proinsulin. Proinsulin is processed to insulin and C-peptide, a contiguous peptide between the insulin A and B chains, as it passes through the cell. The C-peptide in the proinsulin ensures correct folding and processing of proinsulin as it passes through the cell. Both insulin and C-peptide are released together from the beta cells in response to increased glucose levels. Because of differences in half-life and hepatic clearance, peripheral blood levels of C-peptide and insulin are no longer equimolar but remain highly correlated. A steady-state plasma glucose test in individuals undergoing an insulin suppression test to assess insulin resistance found that the combination of insulin and C-peptide was a better indicator of insulin resistance than either one individually.

 

 


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Increased serum CEA levels have been detected in persons with primary colorectal cancer and in patients with other malignancies involving the gastrointestinal tract, breast, lung, ovarian, prostatic, liver and pancreatic cancers. Elevated serum CEA levels have also been detected in patients with nonmalignant disease, especially patients who are older or who are smokers. CEA levels are not useful in screening the general population for undetected cancers. However, CEA levels provide important information about patient prognosis, recurrence of tumors after surgical removal, and effectiveness of therapy.


Chromogranin A, LC/MS/MS - Chromogranin-A (CgA) is an acidic glycoprotein expressed in the secretory granules of most normal and neoplastic neuroendocrine (NE) cell types, where it is released together with peptide hormones and biogenic amines. Neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) are a form of cancer that differ from other neoplasia in that they synthesize, store, and secrete peptides, e.g., CgA and amines. CgA is secreted from neuroendocrine-derived tumors including foregut, midgut and hindgut gastrointestinal NETs, pheochromocytomas, neuroblastomas, medullary thyroid carcinomas, some pituitary tumors, functioning and non-functioning pancreatic NETs.
Significantly elevated CgA levels have been found in patients with other diseases, such as impaired renal function, untreated benign essential hypertension, gastritis, prostatic carcinoma, and hyperparathyroidism. The best-characterized circulating biomarker that identifies NETs in general is CgA. Monitoring blood CgA levels may effectively provide information that is helpful in delineating tumor burden and rate of tumor growth, predicting tumor response to therapy and providing some indication as to prognosis.


Clinical Significance

The glucagon assay is useful primarily when considering a glucagon-secreting tumor of the pancreas. Glucagonomas cause an unusual but characteristic syndrome consisting of a rash, mild diabetes, weight loss and hypoamninoacidemia. Measurement of plasma glucagon confirms the diagnosis; glucagon levels are very high in the setting of glucagonoma.


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Serum glucose levels may be abnormally high (hyperglycemia) or abnormally low (hypoglycemia). Glucose measurements are used in the diagnosis and treatment of carbohydrate metabolic disorders including diabetes mellitus, idiopathic hypoglycemia, and pancreatic islet cell neoplasm.

Plasma glucose levels may be abnormally high (hyperglycemia) or abnormally low (hypoglycemia). Glucose measurements are used in the diagnosis and treatment of carbohydrate metabolic disorders including diabetes mellitus, idiopathic hypoglycemia, and pancreatic islet cell neoplasm.

Plasma glucose levels may be abnormally high (hyperglycemia) or abnormally low (hypoglycemia). Glucose measurements are used in the diagnosis and treatment of carbohydrate metabolic disorders including diabetes mellitus, idiopathic hypoglycemia, and pancreatic islet cell neoplasm.

IA-2 Antibody

Clinical Significance

Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus is characterized by lymphocytic cell infiltration of the beta-cells of pancreatic islets. Measurement of IA-2, GAD-65, ICA-512, and Insulin Antibody is a highly sensitive means to assess risk and predict onset of Type I diabetes.

Reference Range(s)

<5.4 U/mL

Alternative Name(s)

Islet Cell Antigen 512 Antibodies,Tyrosine Phosphatase,Insulinoma-associated Protein 2,ICA 512 Antibody


Islet Cell Antibody Screen with Reflex to Titer

If Islet Cell Antibody Screen is positive, then Islet Cell Antibody Titer will be performed at an additional charge 

Reference Range(s)

Islet Cell Antibody ScreenNegative

  Islet Cell Antibody Titer<1.25 JDF units

Clinical Significance

Islet Cell Antibody Screen with Reflex to Titer - Type 1 diabetes is characterized by lymphocytic cell infiltrate of the pancreatic islets. Measurement of GAD-65, ICA-512, and Insulin Antibody is a highly sensitive means to assess risk and predict onset of Type 1 diabetes. There is a correlation between the number of positive antibodies and the antibody titers versus the severity of the autoimmune process.

 


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Confirmatory evidence for diagnosis of pancreatitis


Every year in the United States, about 275,000 people are admitted to the hospital for acute pancreatitis. 

Acute pancreatitis is a severe form of pancreatic disease, and an amylase serum test is a fantastic tool for diagnosing pancreatic problems.

If you leave pancreatic disease left untreated, it can lead to serious long-term health complications.

If you're looking to learn more about amylase serum testing and common pancreatic diseases, then keep reading this guide to find out everything you need to know.

What is Pancreatic Disease

One of the most common disorders of the pancreas that cause pancreatic disease is pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is when your pancreas becomes inflamed and painful.

Your pancreas is one busy organ, and it's responsible for producing digestive enzymes. These enzymes also help the hormones that regulate your blood sugar.

Pancreatitis can be either acute or chronic. Acute pancreatitis comes on very suddenly and improves within a week after treatment begins. But some cases of acute pancreatitis are so severe they require a hospital stay. 

Severe and untreated cases of acute pancreatitis can lead to necrotizing pancreatitis, which refers to cell and tissue death in your pancreas. Immediate treatment is necessary.

Chronic pancreatitis is long-lasting and doesn't heal or improve like acute pancreatitis. Instead, chronic pancreatitis gets worse over time, and in many cases, causes permanent pancreatic damage.

Other Types of Pancreatic Disease

A Pancreatic disease can also be inherited, called hereditary pancreatitis. This disease is characterized by frequent attacks of pancreatitis early in life, most often when you're under 30. Your family history and genetic testing can identify what pancreatic conditions you may be at risk for.

Another type of pancreatic disease is Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI). EPI develops when you become deficient in the pancreatic enzymes necessary for digestion. This deficiency becomes so severe that you become severely malnourished.

Causes of EPI include pancreatitis, pancreatic cancer, cystic fibrosis, narrowing of the pancreatic duct, and diabetes.  

Pancreatic Cancer

Over 60,000 people in the US are diagnosed every year with pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer begins growing in the tissue of your pancreas, and the most common type is pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma.

Pancreatic cancer is rarely detected in its early stages, as it usually doesn't cause symptoms until after it's spread to your other organs. Although doctors have yet to identify a clear cause, DNA mutations play a key role in pancreatic cancer. 

Other risk factors for pancreatic cancer include smoking, obesity, chronic inflammation of the pancreas, and being over 65.

Causes of Pancreatitis

When you have pancreatitis, your digestive enzymes are activated while still in your pancreas. This activation irritates the cells in your pancreas, causing pain and inflammation.

Gallstones are the leading cause of acute pancreatitis. Other pancreatitis causes include:

  • Alcoholism
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Infection
  • Obesity
  • High levels of calcium
  • High levels of triglycerides
  • Abdominal injury
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Infections from food poisoning such as Salmonella
  • Hepatitis B

However, there are cases where the cause of pancreatitis can't be found. 

Risk factors for Pancreatitis

Lifestyle and genetics are the most significant risk factors for developing pancreatitis. You can cut your chances of developing pancreatitis in half if you reduce alcohol consumption and quit smoking cigarettes. 

Obesity is the next biggest risk factor. Losing weight and exercising daily can keep pancreatitis at bay. 

Genetics play a role too. If you have family members with chronic pancreatitis, then your chances are also greater. Men also have a greater chance than women of getting pancreatitis. 

Signs and Symptoms

Symptoms of pancreatitis depend on if you have acute or chronic pancreatitis. With acute pancreatitis, you'll find symptoms like:

  • Fever
  • Fast heart rate
  • Upper abdominal pain that goes around to your pack
  • Pain that's worse after you eat
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Tenderness to your abdomen

Symptoms of chronic pancreatitis include weight loss, abdominal pain, and oily, smelly stools. See your doctor right away if you have ongoing abdominal pain that doesn't stop. Seek emergency treatment if your pain is so severe you can't get comfortable.

Repeated bouts of acute pancreatitis can lead to chronic pancreatitis, scar tissue formation, loss of pancreatic function, and serious medical complications. 

Complications of Pancreatic Disease

Pancreatitis can become severe and cause serious and even fatal complications like:

  • Severe pancreatic infections
  • Kidney failure
  • Heart failure
  • Diabetes
  • Malnutrition
  • Bleeding in your pancreas
  • Obstruction of your pancreatic duct
  • Severe damage to your pancreas
  • Death

Pancreatitis also may create chemical changes in your body that affect how well your lungs function. Some people with pancreatitis have low oxygen levels.

When you have frequent episodes of pancreatitis and long-term inflammation, you increase your risk of developing pancreatic cancer in the future.

Treatments of Pancreatic Diseases

Treatment for pancreatitis depends on how serious it is. For mild acute pancreatitis, treatment includes pain medication, bowel rest (not eating for a day or two), and plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.

With severe acute pancreatitis, you typically need to be admitted to the hospital for IV fluids, antibiotics, nutrition, and even surgery. People who have severe pancreatitis are at the most risk for organ failure and shock.

Diagnosis of Pancreatic Diseases

To diagnose pancreatic disease, your doctor will first perform a physical exam and ask detailed questions about your health history.

After your assessment, your doctor will want to order further diagnostic tests to confirm or rule out pancreatitis.

Imaging tests include a chest X-ray to check your heart and lungs and an ultrasound to examine your pancreas, gallbladder, and other organs.

Your doctor will often order an Endoscopic Retrograde Cholangiopancreatography (ERCP), a procedure that uses a long tube to visualize and diagnose problems in the liver, gallbladder, and pancreas.  

Next, your doctor will order blood tests such as amylase and lipase to evaluate how your pancreas is functioning.

Pancreatic Disease Lab Test

The enzyme amylase helps you to digest carbohydrates. Amylase is often elevated in pancreatic diseases, such as pancreatitis.

Acute pancreatitis is a severe form of pancreatic disease, and an amylase serum lab test is a fantastic tool for diagnosing pancreatic problems. Elevated amylase levels reaching three times the normal limit is an excellent indicator of acute pancreatitis. 

An amylase serum test is also helpful in monitoring the cell damage in chronic pancreatitis. 

Lipase is another pancreatic disease test that is often used to help confirm a diagnosis of pancreatitis. Lipase is an enzyme that helps digest fats. Your lipase levels will rise within 8 hours after pancreatitis symptoms start. 

Your doctor will also likely order a complete blood counttriglyceride levels, and a comprehensive metabolic panel to assess your organs and overall health status.

Pancreatic Disease FAQS

Did you know the pancreas has four main parts? The head, neck, body, and tail make up your pancreas, and the pancreatic head attaches to your small intestine.

The venom from a bite of the Brazilian scorpion Tityus serrulatus can cause pancreatitis.

People knew all about the pancreas even in 300 BCE. The ancient Greeks identified the pancreas as a gland but didn't fully understand how it functioned.

Amylase Serum Test

Make the right choice for your amylase serum test. Choose Ulta Lab Tests for all your lab testing needs. Our tests are reliable and guarantee accurate results.

With Ulta Labs, you don't need insurance or a doctor's referral. We offer affordable pricing for all tests, which also includes a doctor's order. 

Once you order your pancreatic disease test, you'll have secure and confidential results usually within 24 to 48 hours.

Take charge with Ulta Lab Tests and start living a healthier tomorrow.

Known as EPI (or Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency), pancreatic insufficiency is the inability of the pancreas to produce and/or transport sufficient amounts of the digestive enzymes required to break down food particles in the intestine. 

The pancreas gland is a flat, narrow organ measuring about 6 inches long located deep in the abdominal cavity, below the liver and behind the stomach. It is divided into a head, middle, and tail sections. The head section connects to the first part of the duodenum (small intestine). 

The pancreas produces digestive enzymes and bicarbonate that are sent via small tubes (ducts) to the large pancreatic duct. These digestive enzymes and bicarbonate are carried down the length of the pancreas from the tail to the head section of the pancreas into the duodenum by the pancreatic duct. Also, running through the head section is the common bile duct that carries bile from the gallbladder and liver to the small intestine. The pancreatic and bile ducts join together just before entering the duodenum, sharing a common opening into the small intestine. 

There are two kinds of tissues in the pancreas that perform different functions: 

The Exocrine tissue in the pancreas is responsible for making, storing, and releasing the powerful enzymes needed to digest proteins, carbohydrates, and fats in the small intestine. These enzymes are normally produced and carried to the small intestine in an inactive form where they are activated as needed. Bicarbonate is also produced and released by the exocrine tissue to allow activation of the pancreatic enzymes and to neutralize stomach acids. 

The Endocrine tissue in the pancreas is responsible for producing hormones like insulin and glucagon and releasing them into the blood. These two hormones regulate the transport of glucose (sugar) into the cells of the body, where it can be used for energy. They also help to maintain healthy blood sugar levels in the body. 

Pancreatic Insufficiency 

Pancreatic insufficiency in adults occurs typically as a result of ongoing and progressive damage to the pancreas brought on by repeated bouts of acute pancreatitis or chronic pancreatitis caused by a variety of different conditions. 

Pancreatic insufficiency in children is most frequently associated with diseases such as CF (or cystic fibrosis) or SDS (or Shwachman-Diamond Syndrome). CF is the most common cause of inherited pancreatic insufficiency, followed closely by SDS as the second most common. In all cases of SDS, there is some degree of pancreatic insufficiency present that began in infancy. 

Conditions That May Cause EPI (or exocrine pancreatic insufficiency) 

EPI may also develop in those suffering from the following conditions: 

  • Diabetes 
  • Celiac disease 
  • Pancreatic cancer 
  • Crohn’s disease 
  • Autoimmune pancreatitis (an immunoglobulin G4-related disease) 
  • Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome is a rare condition that is caused by a pancreatic tumor that stimulates the release of excess acid from the stomach.)  Temporary pancreatic insufficiency may be caused by this excess acid; however, the symptoms usually disappear when the excess acid is treated. 
  • Certain surgical procedures that can affect the function of the pancreas or digestive tract can also lead to EPI. 

Signs and Symptoms of Pancreatic Insufficiency 

The most common symptoms of EPI include: 

  • Abdominal bloating and/or frequent gas 
  • Abdominal cramps and pain, sometimes referred to as epigastric pain as it occurs in the upper-middle part of the abdomen. 
  • Fatigue and general tiredness 
  • Unexplained weight loss and the inability to gain weight in children 
  • Frequent diarrhea or greasy, foul-smelling stools that tend to float 

Those with EPI may also suffer from malnutrition, malabsorption, and vitamin deficiencies. Because symptoms of EPI may not be readily evident or appear similar to those caused by other disorders of the digestive tract, laboratory evaluation is often needed to diagnose the condition. 

Tests for Pancreatic Insufficiency 

Laboratory tests used for the detection of EPI include: 

Stool Elastase to measure the level of elastase enzymes (produced by the pancreas) in a stool sample. It is not as effective at detecting milder cases of EPI but quite effective at detecting moderate to severe cases. Those with EPI will have a reduced amount of elastase in their stool. 

Chymotrypsin tests are used to measure the level of the pancreatic enzyme, chymotrypsin, in a stool sample. In those with EPI, the enzyme chymotrypsin will be absent. 

IRT (or immunoreactivity trypsinogen) measures the level of trypsinogen in the blood. Trypsinogen is an inactive precursor that is produced by the pancreas and converted to the enzyme trypsin, responsible for the digestion of proteins. IRT levels may be elevated in those with pancreatitis, a condition that causes EPI. 

Fecal fat tests are used to detect the amount of excess fat in the stool. Excess fat in the stool is often the first sign of pancreatic insufficiency. This test has largely been replaced by the Stool Elastase test, which is easier to perform. 

The 13C-mixed triglyceride breath test is a newer method used for the diagnosis of moderate EPI. However, it is not yet commonly available or widely used. This test can also be used to evaluate the effectiveness of treatments for people with EPI, such as enzyme therapy for fat digestion. 

Some non-laboratory tests may be employed to diagnose pancreatic insufficiency.  These tests include CT (or computed tomography) scan, ERCP (or endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography, MRCP (or magnetic resonance cholangiopancreatography, and ultrasound. 

Treatment for Pancreatic Insufficiency 

Individuals can manage their pancreatic insufficiency with a few treatments: 

  • PERT (or pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy) by taking enzyme supplements to replace those that the pancreas is not producing anymore.  
  • Good, healthy diet. 
  • Vitamin supplements (particularly vitamins A, D, E, and K) if warranted. 
  • Lifestyle changes, such as reduced alcohol consumption and smoking. 
  • Managing or resolving any underlying cause will also treat EPI. 
  • Unlike cystic fibrosis, SDS may improve with age.  
  • Approximately half of the children with SDS will have an improvement in their pancreatic function and fat absorption and will no longer require ERT. 

The pancreas is described as a flat, narrow gland that is around six inches in length located inside the abdominal cavity, under the liver, and behind your stomach. This gland features a head, a middle, and a tail section. The head section connects to the duodenum (first part of the small intestine).  

The pancreas has tubes (small ducts) that feed bicarbonate and digestive enzymes that the pancreas produces directly into a pancreatic duct. This is a large duct that transports the bicarbonate and digestive enzymes down the pancreas, starting from the tail section towards the head section, where the enzymes travel into the small intestine (duodenum).  

In the head section of the pancreas, there is also a bile duct running through that carries bile produced by the gallbladder and liver into the area of the small intestine.  

The pancreatic and bile duct join just before they enter the duodenum, which means they share an opening before they enter the small intestine. The pancreas is made up of two types of tissues. These both perform a different function: 

The exocrine pancreas produces, stores, along with releasing powerful enzymes that digest fats, carbohydrates, and proteins inside the small intestine. The enzymes are normally produced and transported in a form that is inactive into the small intestine, where the enzymes activate as needed.  

Exocrine tissues present in the pancreas also produce and release enzymes like bicarbonate. This is what neutralizes the acids in the stomach and allows the pancreatic enzymes to activate.  

The endocrine pancreas creates hormones that include glucagon and insulin, before releasing these into the bloodstream. These are the hormones that perform the function of regulating glucose (sugar) transport into the cells of the body, where it used in the form of energy, along with helping to regulate and maintain blood sugar levels.  

Diseases of The Pancreas 

Pancreatitis is when the pancreas becomes inflamed. This occurs when the digestive enzymes activate while they are still inside the pancreas. This causes injury and irritation to the pancreatic tissues, which result in inflammation.  

Pancreatitis is Either Chronic or Acute

Acute pancreatitis means that the inflammation will develop fast and then subside within days or weeks. The pancreas will return to a state of normality once it heals. The primary cause is long-term alcohol abuse and gallstones. When acute pancreatitis becomes more frequent, it can result in chronic pancreatitis.  

Chronic pancreatitis involves inflammation that is long-lasting. It can also lead to scar tissue development inside this gland which stops is from working correctly. Long-term alcohol abuse is one of the leading causes of the condition known as chronic pancreatitis. For those that smoke cigarettes, there is also an increased risk of contracting this condition.  

Pancreatic Cancer 

This type of cancer involves the uncontrolled growth of cells regarded as abnormal inside the pancreas. These cancerous cells start forming malignant tumors. This damages the tissues and stops the pancreas from performing in the way that it should.  

Pancreatic cancer is the 4th leading cause of cancer deaths in women and men in the U.S.  The American Cancer Society states that close to 57,000 Americans are routinely diagnosed with this cancer every year, and around 46,000 people will die from this disease.  

The majority of pancreatic cancers, around 95%, start inside the exocrine cells, which are the ducts and the glands inside the pancreas. Pancreatic cancer happens to be hard to diagnose and detect, especially in the earlier stages, as the symptoms are usually non-specific or absent.  

Pancreatic Insufficiency 

This is a condition whereby the pancreas is unable to transport or/and produce a sufficient amount of digestive enzymes in order to break down the food that enters the intestine. This is also a condition that goes by the name of EPI (or Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency)  

EPI usually occurs from progressive or ongoing pancreatic damage, which is caused by several types of conditions. It is commonly linked to cystic fibrosis that occurs in children along with chronic pancreatitis that occurs in adults. It is not usually caused by pancreatic cancer.  

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