10 Signs and Symptoms of Pancreatitis

Pancreatitis is a medical condition in which the pancreas becomes inflamed. If left untreated, people can experience severe, and even lethal, side effects.

In order to prevent complications, it’s necessary to receive proper medical care, so we’ve outlined some of the most common signs of a potential pancreatitis diagnosis. Read on to learn more.

1. Abdominal Pain

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One of the first signs of pancreas problems is abdominal pain. It can be felt in the middle and upper parts of the back. It can range from mild to severe, and could last for many days at a time.

Abdominal pain can trigger the following symptoms…

2. Fever & Chills

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Experiencing fever and chills is one of the most common pancreatitis signs. It is advised to seek immediate medical attention when experiencing these symptoms, as they can trigger sepsis, which can be life-threatening.

In cases of acute pancreatitis, expect these next symptoms to appear more often…

3. Nausea and Vomiting

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Having an inflamed pancreas impedes normal food digestion. Such inflammation can cause nausea and vomiting, especially after eating fatty foods, which are harder to digest.

Some symptoms occur more frequently than the rest, as the next one suggests…

4. Bloating

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In acute pancreatitis, a person may experience bloating in the upper abdomen, due to the immobility of stomach contents. This can result in swelling.

As a result of poor digestion, it’s no surprise that the following symptom often occurs…

5. Weight Loss

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If you enjoy eating a decent amount of food, beware that an inflamed pancreas is unable to produce the enzymes needed to break down and help the body absorb the nutrients it needs. As such, the body might not get the nutrients it needs, leading to weight loss.

Bowel movements are also affected by pancreatitis, as the next slide shows…

6. Diarrhea

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A disrupted pancreas can also affect the person’s bowel movements. Such disruption can lead to diarrhea, one of the most severe symptoms of pancreatitis.

With pancreatitis, even waste can cause concern…

7. Greasy Stool

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With pancreatic enzymes being unable to process fat in the food, the stool becomes even more foul-smelling, greasy-looking, and can even be hard to flush down the toilet.

As if that’s not enough to worry about, pancreatitis also affects the liver…

8. Jaundice

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The liver also suffers as a result of pancreatitis, which can result in jaundice. Jaundice is a result of buildup of the yellowish substance, bilirubin, where the sclera (white part of the eyes) and the skin meet. This buildup turns the skin and eyes yellow. Urine can also darken due to this buildup.

At times the symptoms of pancreatitis can even leave you gasping for air…

9. Respiratory Problems

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Pancreatitis can severely harm lung function and cause dangerously low levels of oxygen in the blood. In more severe cases, some patients develop life-threatening respiratory complications. This just goes to show what pancreatitis is capable of when it comes to our health.

Our last symptom is something to always look out for… 

10. Hypovolemic Shock

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This is perhaps the most serious pancreatitis sign on our list. In critical cases, parts of the pancreas may die, causing fluid and blood to spread to the abdominal cavity and reducing the pressure and amount of blood that circulates throughout the body. This may lead to hypovolemic shock and eventual organ failure, which can be fatal.

Call 911 or your doctor immediately if you suspect you are experiencing a hypovolemic shock.

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