It does get better! Acute Pancreatitis

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Hi there,

Almost 4 weeks ago I had my first (and hopefully last) acute pancreatic attack. I was hospitalized and put on nil by mouth for 36 hours. My hospital stay was for three nights and then I came home.

The first few weeks at home were very average. I was in quite a bit of discomfort (especially during and after doing a wee). It was very depressing as I am an active person.

But, today, I am feeling heaps better! Finally.

I must say that taking great heed of diet and rest was instrumental to my recovery. Small meals of the following was what I ate: jelly, fruit, mashed potato with veg and salmon, chicken and veg soup (which was put in the fridge and the fat scraped off the top before I ate it), English muffins with jam, corn thins, plain cooked pasta etc. I stayed away from oil, butter, dairy as well as checked labels on everything I purchased - the advice I was given was 70g fat in total per day...this is not much.

I was also unable to stand upright until today and was hunched over like Gollum in LOTR.

Hopefully my recovery will continue, but I just wanted to write this so any future people with an attack the same level as mine can take comfort that it will get better.

Oh, drink pear juice regularly as pancreatitis is synonymous with constipation. ;-)

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  • Posted

    I had a severe acute attack of pancreatitis on April 21. 2013. I was in the hospital for 9 days....unable to eat for five of those and three spent in ICU. I went back on May 8 with lots of pain and had developed a pseudo cyst. I was in there for 5 days then. Then, I went back in again on May 30 with pain again, cyst had grown by 10% and I had acquired colitis and a urinary tract infection. I was in for four days this time. It is now June 13 and I am still out. I have my good days, when I don't feel like there is anything wrong at all and then other days, I am nauseated all day long, even with Zofran for nausea and everything stinks to me. I cannot eat very much food before becoming very full. Nothing tastes good and I cannot drink much liquid and thus stay dehydrated. Any suggestions as to what has worked for you? This is truly miserable. I live in Houston, TX. I just happened to find this posting and wanted to talk to someone else familiar with this terrible problem.

    Thank you,

    Sheri

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    • Posted

      Sheri3:

      I live in Kentucky with my wife, she sufer from a hearth attack (takesubo), is the type of hearth attack that is easy to recover from, high blood pressure. But the biggest problem that she have is the pancreatitis, she was diagnose with "Acute Pancreatitis". She have this problem since September 2016 and today is November 13, 2016 and she is still have the intense pain in her abdomen every single day. Is more intense during the night, but always the pain is there. I'm see her sufer every day without no way for me to help her. She is scare of eating, that include her medications when is time to take them. because she is scare that the pain wil get worse.

      I don't wish these problem to not one. Pain that is with you every day is very discouraging. I write this to you to let you know that you are not the only one with this problem, and to keep fighting not only for yourself but for your family. i just talked to my wife, the hot shower help to easy the pain, but not all of it. I told her the same that I tell you know, when you feel that you can eat, take antioxidants, I found a herb in the internet called "Chanca Piedra", this herb help to dissolve kiney stones, if that is the cause of your pancreatitis. Keep searching to found a solution. I know is easy for the other person that don't have the pain to said all that. Keep fighting!!!

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    • Posted

      I had my first acute pancreatitis August 2015. I spent a week in hospital came home and recovered about a week or 2. I was ok. Sept 22 of this year I had another attack and went back into hospital for 6 days. Came home for about a week then had another attack and was immediately put back in hospital for 5 more days. They took my gallbladder out sept 24 hoping it was the gallbladder. That would be a negative. They have done an autoimmune test which is also negative. Not having any luck. Since I have been home from the hospital I pretty much throw up almost everything I eat unless it's soup of crackers. I've lost a good bit of wait and pretty much hurt all the time. I throw up almost everyday at least once a day. I take zofran around the clock still nauseated. An ERCP can be done but I have had gastric bypass so the procedure is not an easy one. It would be an actual surgery for me. A normal ERCP is down the throat etc. most everyday I do not feel well. I am having to work. I am a teacher and have used all my sick days during this time. I make it day by day but not easy. About to find some different dr and see where it goes. It's bad when you feel better laying in s hospital bed than home. The ERCP may still not fix the cause of pancreatitis and it may cause an attack. They tell me I may be one of those 1 in 10 that's idiopathic which I don't by. You are not the only one. Good day but mostly bad days since sept 22 2016

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    • Posted

      Hi, I too have pancreatitis & it was initiated by ERCP (3/7/18)to remove 2 gall stones in common bile duct.  My gallbladder was removed on 12/8/17 & developed same type of gall bladder pain early Feb, had MRI which showed the stones.  Have you had an MRI to look for stones in your bile or pancreatic duct?  I also have a pancreatic cyst now & hopefully won’t have to have a drain put in.  I’m 67 & never had an illness this bad.  Finally after 5 weeks some foods is starting to taste better.  Have had no appetite & water tastes bitter.  Lost 20 lbs since 3/7/18.  Finally felt well enough to go to the store but after walking a short while abdomen started feeling yucky.  Had dinner out, probably too much fat & this outing really set me back so when you start getting over this, take it slow & easy.  Good luck you and all others suffering with pancreatitis!

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  • Posted

    Burneye wrote 'Oh, drink pear juice regularly as pancreatitis is synonymous with constipation'

    Not true, this symptom more to do with the medication used for pancreatic pain.

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    • Posted

      Hi I saw what happen to you I was reading you drank pear witch one sugar free or regular with sugar thank you 
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  • Posted

    I had an attack of acute pancreatitis which started on July 16th I was in hospital for 7 nights .

    This was my first and only( hopefully) attack .

    I came home from hospital still in pain and swollen up like a ballon ,I couldn,t lay on my side or stand upright .After 3 days at home resting I started to recover and cut out the pain killers which were ,nepofam,tramadol,and paracetamol ,also morphine whilst in hospital .

    I just felt the need to put something out there positive as when I searched for some info everything was quite negative.

    I am now well I have lost some weight (which is a positive thing ) I have cut out alcohol completely and started eating much healthier and am feeling great.

    I have an appointment at the hospital next week , I have my own idea what caused my attack (not alcohol or gall stones ) and will post on here after discussing my thoughts with consultant .

    Keep positive x

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    • Posted

      Hi Carol331

      I've just come out of hospital after 7 days, was rushed in with stomach pain and diagnosed with acute pancreatitis, I had ct and mri scans, my confusion (and doctors ) is that I had my gallbladder removed 7 years ago due to gallstones and I am not a big drinker at all , like yourself, they have not mentioned my diet or to change what I eat, but I have no appertite, my interest in your post is your idea to what caused your attack? Like you say the internet doesnt have anything good to say about pancreatits, I'm still in pain and just would like answers.

       

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    • Posted

      Hi juliet340,

      Its been a year on the 16th of this month since my attack of acute pancreatitis .I am well and healthy and have had no further attacks thankfully !. .

      My ideas of what may have caused my illness wasnt taken seriously by the doctor at the hospital .I thought maybe the fact I had been on the 5.2 fasting diet , ( some weeks 4.3) and practicaly starving myself could have caused an inbalance of sugar and insulin etc but the doc said it was likely to have been a virus ( coxsackie or mumps ).

      I eat more healthily than before and still am teetotal but thats a small price to pay to keep well .I take grape seed extract every day which is an excellent antioxident and helps with healing, also turmeric which is great for anti inflamatory properties ., and thats all really ,just getting on with life ( off to greece next week smile ).

      Try not to read the doom and gloom forums to find out info like I did at first ,I became a bit obsessed looking for good news , sadly the people who seem to post on these forums are the ones who get repeated attacks, and that is not always the case .

      Hope you are soon feeling better ,It does get better !!!! x

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    • Posted

      God Carol, thankyou for your fast reply, you have made me feel so much better, I'm reading everything on line and not read a good thing yet about pancreatits, its all bad news. I'm still in pain and been given the same painkillers you had. I'll definatley give up drinking, not that I was a big drinker anyway. And I'll try the grape seed extract also, I'll try anything!! I also was doing the 5.2 diet!! 

      How long did your pain last when you came home and did you have a follow on appointment, I still want to know when my pancreas returns to normal.

      thankyou again 

      Julie

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    • Posted

      Hi juliet340 , patient uk sent a notification to my email and when I read your message I felt I had to answer as I was in your situation  year ago .

      The pain gradually got better over a couple of weeks after I got home ,it still hurt when the car hit pot holes in the road !!! . I didnt have any appetite at all for a couple of weeks but it did come back completely.

      I had my mri scan 4 weeks after I was discharged from hospital ,I still had fluid and inflammation on my pancreas ,I then had a ct scan in Oct and was told then the inflammation was settling down .My last appointment was in Apr this year and I was discharged completley.

      The fact that you were also on the 5.2 diet really makes you think that there could be a link ,I was talking to a girl in the hairdressers a few month ago who also got an attack of pancreatitis while on the 5.2 !!.Its a horrible illness and does take time to recover ,but it does get better and doesnt always come back !

      Carol

       

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    • Posted

      Thank you again for taking time out to reply, Atleast I now know that my pancreas won't mend quickly, struggling with a low fat diet, as I love a takeaway and I'm a chocoholic !  Now wondering if my high fat rubbish diet contributed to my  pancreatitis attack in the first place. I'd also just returned from Barbados 2weeks earlier so also wondering if all the eating and drinking on holiday or picked up a virus but the Dr's said a virus would of showed up in my bloods. Fingers crossed its just been a freak one off like yours. 

      Julie 

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    • Posted

      Hi Carol,

      Thank you for sharing your story it has given me lots of hope for positive outcome. I went to ER 29/09/16 at around 11.30pm with what I thought was appendicitis I was really tender on the right lower abdomen and around to back which extended higher and got a lot worse while I was waiting for treatment. Basically they stuffed around for a few hours sent me for an X-ray and diagnosed me with constipation gave a laxative cocktail and said I could go home. That was until they finally got my blood tests back showing I had triglycerides of 185.9 (Australian) which is around 7500 by the US measurements. That's when he panicked and I was admitted at 4.30am with acute pancreatitis secondary to hypertriglycerademia. I was started on an insulin infusion drip and had to wait until 4.30pm to have a CT & ultrasound scan to confirm diagnosis of Severe acute pancreatitis. I was in this hospital for 3 nights and they told me I could go home, I was far from comfortable about that decision but was told I could not stay. I was home for 4 nights then my husband took me to a better hospital and i was admitted for another 4 nights. I am doing a lot better now, and am sticking to very low fat diet, I was told no alcohol for 6 months but I really don't want to risk it after that anyway. I don't have gallbladder either so low fat is a must. Hoping this is my first and last episode and will do whatever I can to avoid another one. I like you too got a little obsessed trying to find positive information on the net, I was worrying myself more. How did you manage overseas on your Greece holiday? We want to travel but I am worried about how to pick healthy food away from home.

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    • Posted

      Hi Kellie

      It's now 2 1/2 years since my one and only acute pancreatitis attack, after a good 18month under investigation and numerous tests no cause was found, I slowly started drinking again but I've never been much of a drinker anyway so that wasn't the cause, but was finding it difficult socialising so I do drink now and again. Also my diet is just back to normal not restricting myself anything. I believe there is another cause for acute pancreatitis that they haven't found yet as so many people on this site are not alcoholics and don't have a gallbladder to blame gallstones and seem to recover. I hope this applies to yourself.

      I not saying drink and eat what you want yet, it's took me 2yrs to relax slowly back to normal.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for responding Juliet, it is so good to hear positive outcomes. Was yours a severe episode? How long did it take for you to feel back to your usual self? My rib cage gets a bit sore as the day goes on, so I rest and feel

      better. My appetite is good, I just get a bit of heartburn, which I have been on medication for since I had my gall bladder out about 16 years ago. I have lost 12kg since episode and drink heaps of water. & eating very healthy. I had been on Lipidil (for triglycerides) prior to attack but stopped taking it as endocrinologist who was looking after me for my Thyroid (throidectomy due to cancer 2009) told me in March I didn't need to take it as my new thyroid medication would sort it out naturally. Not!

      I am so glad to hear you have been travelling so well I am feeling more confident I can too. 👍👍 and know it is going to take some time for it to heal.

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    • Posted

      Hi Kellie, it was a serious attack hospitalised  for 7 days on a drip,  couldn't stand upright, it probably took about 5month to feel better, took extra holiday insurance out to cover any attack for two yrs , I think there is something in living without a gallbladder, as mine was taken out 10 years ago, and there's a lot of stories on here very similar, I read everything online when it happened trying to find a cause and read an interesting article from an American website, that when your gallbladder is removed where it has been cut out you can get a blockage in the tube that now goes no where and could cause an attack. 

      Fingers crossed for you , that your life will return to normal in at least a year.

       

       

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    • Posted

      I think so too Juliet, i read something similar, they actually were checking for that at hospital. I was never quite the same after my gall was taken out, everything is in there for a reason. My mum feels the same, she had hers out when she was 40ish since my episode we have talked every day, (we live in different states) we think she had an undiagnosed pancreatitis attack about 10 years ago she was hospitalised for 10 days 5 on a drip in a lot of pain and bloated hard belly they never did a CT or ultrasound on her told her to have one when she left hospital, they told her she was constipated too. Her liver blood tests where through the roof, as were mine but my lipase stayed normal the whole time, (which is uncommon but does happen, especially if no gall bladder) I think that's why there was a delay in my diagnoses, we are wondering if her lipase did too.... she is also type 2 diabetic, but had been borderline since she was young.

      I am so glad you have responded to my posts and really appreciate your comments. I have resigned myself to the fact it is going to take time to get better, but I will. I was made redundant from work the month prior so my husband wants me take as much time as I need to before looking for work again.

      thank you, Kellie

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    • Posted

      Trying to stay positive but like you said almost everything I've read is all negative.

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    • Posted

      Hi Kellie ,sorry to hear about your pancreatitis attack . Just wanted to let you know its now been 3 years and 4 months since my attack . I now eat what I choose and have no effects at all ,I gave up alcohol completely after the attack which is a bit boring but better than risking getting the dreaded pancreatitis again !. Try not to read all the forums as there doesnt seem to be much positive news out there ,but people do recover and some only have one attack .

      I go abroad at least twice a year and apart from not drinking i,m fine .

      I was also diagnosed with idiopathic pancreatitis ,but did like a drink (vodka and diet coke ) a couple of times a week .

      I hope you are soon feeling better ,take care x

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    • Posted

      Hi carol, thank you so much for getting back to me, that is great news! I too am hoping it was a one off attack mine was due to severely high triglycerides, they have told me as long as I keep them right down I should be fine, as that was the trigger, so I am on a mission to get within the normal ranges. I have been really worried about the damage It has done to my pancreas but only time will tell.

      I think I will be a teetotaller as well, even though they have told me I could have a glass of wine after 6 months, I'd be too scared too. I have never been a big drinker either and was always the designated driver when we caught up with friends.

      Staying off the net I was giving myself anxiety!

      Fingers crossed all will be good just like you & looking forward to a positive future.

      All the best 😊

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    • Posted

      Hi Carol, I meant to ask you when you were in hospital did they diagnose you with mild or severe acute pancreatitis?

      Kellie

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    • Posted

      Hi Carol, I meant to ask you when you were in hospital did they diagnose you with mild or severe acute pancreatitis?

      Kellie

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    • Posted

      Hi Kellie , I wasnt told if it was mild or severe ,to be honest I wasnt given much information about pancreatitis at all ,thats why I started searching online for infomation once I was home from hospital.

      I was rushed in by ambulance straight to resus ,I was in hospital 8 days on morphine with a catheter in and my body was so swollen an ultra sound revealed I had free fluid around my pancreas ,liver and spleen .I had a mri scan which they told me showed I had a 6cm psuedo cyst ,which when I went back 8 weeks later was shown to be remaining fluid .and swelling ..I recovered quickly and went back to work 4 weeks after falling ill .

      Hope this helps and take care .Carol

       

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    • Posted

      Hey Juliet 340,

      I just had partial knee replacement surgery! As if that post op pain wasn't enough to deal with, I was bent over with stomach cramps!

      Turns out it was a case of pancreatitis and I'm positive this has been brought on by the Naproxen I took for nearly six months, while awaiting surgery !!!

      Have you been on any strong anti- inflammatory drugs?

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    • Posted

      Hi Kellie,

      I know that you posted two years ago and you probably won’t see this, but I’m hoping maybe someone reads this. 

      I had a similar situation to yours just a few weeks ago, and I am hoping to get some insight. 

      My triglycerides were through the roof, even though my diet and alcohol consumption were not that bad overall. I do have my gallbladder, and they didn’t see any stones. 

      How was your diet before your attack? Did you manage to figure out what caused such a high triglyceride value?

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